He has had meetings with CM Mamata Banerjee and her nephew Abhishek.


New Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s new found tutor and political strategist Prashant Kishor has laid down an elaborate strategy for stitching a third-term victory for Banerjee in the state.

Kishor himself had been campaigning in West Bengal throughout the month of July and had held regular meetings with Mamata Banerjee and her nephew Abhishek Banerjee.

According to sources, Abhishek Banerjee has been asked to look after the day-to-day dealings with Kishor’s political consulting company I-PAC, while Mamata Banerjee would be focusing on her government in Bengal. Abhishek Banerjee has also been asked by Kishor to make himself more visible and he is likely to be seen more often in the coming days.

A senior member of Kishor’s team told this correspondent, “Prashant Kishor is taking great interest in this job and has been personally monitoring every instruction given by him. He has also been coming to office on a regular basis and it seems he has been taking more interest in TMC than his own party JDU.”

The “Didi Ke Bolo” (Tell Didi) campaign is part of the elaborate campaign strategy and has been launched to bring out the issues that concern each Vidhan Sabha constituency, according to sources in Kishor’s team in Bengal. A team of more than 100 to 120 people are constantly collecting and tabulating data to find out the issues that people are complaining about from every Vidhan Sabha in Bengal.

A source from I-PAC told this correspondent, “A call centre has been outsourced for handling the calls that will be received. They have been briefed to take note of the Vidhan Sabha and their contact details. After two months, a screening team will be formed and the team will analyse these data and bring out the major problems from each Vidhan Sabha.”

“After this exercise, a field team will be researching on the issues plaguing the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in Bengal and take direct feedback from the people. The party has asked us to focus on the constituencies that the TMC lost in the Lok Sabha elections,” the source added.

Kishor has also directed Mamata to instruct all her MLAs to visit one village every week for the next few months and the MLAs have been asked to spend time with the local people, eat with them and spend the night with the villagers. The MLAs are also supposed to report back to I-PAC every week with the grievances of the people and any other inputs they have picked up from the ground.  This exercise is being directly monitored by Abhishek Banerjee, and all MLAs are required to send a copy of the report to Abhishek Banerjee on a weekly basis.

Sources have, however, said that some of the MLAs from Mamata Banerjee’s TMC are not complying with her orders of visiting villages and a report on them has already been sent to Abhishek Banerjee and they are being looked at as “potential defectors”.

The source quoted above said, “We have received reports of some eight to ten MLAs who are not going to the villages that have been identified for them. They have made excuses like they have not been keeping well or that there has been some problem back at their home. The names of these MLAs have been reported to Abhishek Banerjee and even our team is anticipating that these MLAs could defect to the other party in the coming days.”

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