New Delhi: s part of its national adventure, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) is hoping to contest the Uttar Pradesh elections scheduled to be held in early 2022, in alliance with the Samajwadi Party (SP), apart from contesting the Assembly elections in Goa next year where it has already allied with the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party.
Sources in the TMC have told The Sunday Guardian that the party is in talks with the Akhilesh Yadav-led SP for seat sharing, and a formal announcement on this is likely to be made in the early weeks of January.
“The TMC has reached out to Akhilesh Yadav and the Samajwadi Party for contesting the Uttar Pradesh elections in coalition with their party. The TMC has sent a proposal to the SP about the number of seats that the TMC is wanting to contest in the state and soon positive news for the party is likely to emerge from UP,” a TMC leader aware of the developments told this newspaper.
Highly placed sources within the TMC have said that the TMC is hoping to contest 10 to 15 seats in UP and that it will restrict itself to only these few seats this time given the fact that the party does not have a wide presence in the state. Sources also said that the party will contest in places that have some Bengali population and Purvanchali voters since a large number of Purvanchalis stay in Bengal and have witnessed the work done by the TMC led by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
The TMC, in the meantime, has also formalised a small state unit of the party in Uttar Pradesh, giving the responsibility of the unit to Neeraj Rai as the TMC’s state president. The TMC is also banking on the party’s support to the farmers’ movement and is hoping to galvanise some support in the Western Uttar Pradesh belt which is dominated by Jat farmers.
The TMC had launched a “mass contact” programme earlier this year to enrol common people to the TMC and according to sources, it has been able to get some positive response from some districts of the state.
TMC leaders also believe that former Congress MLA Lalitesh Pati Tripathi’s induction into the TMC in Uttar Pradesh would give the party some push in UP and make it a small, but formidable player in the state’s politics.
Samajwadi Party leaders believe that the Mamata Banerjee-led TMC would contest in Uttar Pradesh polls and they believe that an alliance between both the parties could be reality soon since SP chief Akhilesh Yadav shares a good rapport with Mamata Banerjee.
Akhilesh Yadav had also praised Mamata Banerjee multiple times for “fighting” the BJP and has hailed Banerjee as one of the “biggest challengers” to the BJP. Yadav has also not put aside the question of an alliance with the TMC when asked at several occasions by the media, he had said that “let the time come.”
In Goa, where the TMC is going to debut for the first time in the upcoming Assembly polls in the state, the party has already allied with the MGP and will contest the elections with them. The TMC was also supposed to ally with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for the Goa Assembly polls, but the alliance did not materialise since the AAP did not agree to the number of seats that the TMC was demanding from them. Sources in AAP aware of this development said that the TMC was demanding around 10 to 12 out of the 40 seats from AAP in Goa and that AAP believed that the TMC was “not worthy” in more than 3 to 4 seats in the coastal state and, therefore, the talks between AAP and TMC for an alliance in Goa have fallen apart.