Sources close to TMC claim that the party has been developing many units outside West Bengal.

 

Kolkata: To expand the Trinamool Congress (TMC) nationally, the party is portraying young faces to attract the youth. The TMC reshuffle highlights that youth would help in the national expansion of the party under the supervision of experienced workers of the TMC. Following the rule of “one person one post”, the party has promoted Abhishek Banerjee, the nephew of Mamata Banerjee, as the national general secretary of All India Trinamool Congress (AITC).

To understand the ground reality, The Sunday Guardian spoke to political analyst Biswajit Chakraborty. He said, “The TMC reshuffled to put Abhishek Banerjee in the forefront. Now, he will play an integral part in TMC.”

“TMC has a chance to expand nationally as the party puts forward the vulnerability of the minority section. The TMC may play populist politics to appeal to the minority community in other states. If the BJP had won in West Bengal, they (BJP) could have entered into permanent conflict with the minority communities. Moreover, BJP used communal politics during the West Bengal election campaign. Several Muslim communities in many other constituencies of West Bengal have silently voted for the TMC to avoid hostility against the minorities,” he told this newspaper.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee promoted her nephew and MP Abhishek Banerjee to the second-most important post, TMC all-India general secretary. Abhishek Banerjee, 33, one of the active campaigners, has clarified that he doesn’t intend to hold any public office or ministerial post.

He entered politics in 2011, the first time when TMC achieved a landslide victory against CPI(M). He was made the TMC Youth Wing President. He first contested the Lok Sabha election on a TMC ticket from Diamond Harbour in 2014 and won against the CPI(M) candidate Abul Hasnat. In 2019, he won against a BJP candidate. On 7 June, at a press conference, he also said that new developments require new plans, and this time, the new plan for expansion of the TMC would be different.

Actor-turned-politician Saayoni Ghosh has prioritised politics in the recent scenario. The party feels that her ability to communicate freely in English and Bengali fluently will help the youth. TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh was appointed as the General Secretary of the party’s state committee.

Before getting arrested for the Sarada scam in November 2013, he was suspended for speaking against the party. He had consistently tried to implicate several TMC leaders into the scam and claimed that he was being made a scapegoat. After getting released on bail in 2016, he was again charged with several cases in many districts. However, ahead of the 2021 Assembly election, the party inducted Kunal Ghosh once again.

Actor-turned-politician Sayantika Bandhopadhyay is a newly elected state secretary. She contested as a TMC candidate from the Bankura constituency in the 2021 West Bengal Assembly election. She lost against Niladri Shekhar Dana, BJP candidate.

MP Kakali Ghosh Dastidar was appointed as the women’s wing chief. She came to power on a TMC ticket from Barasat Lok Sabha constituency in 2009. She retained her Lok Sabha seats in the 2014 general election by winning 1,73,141 votes while defeating the All India Forward Block candidate.

In 2019, Barasat election, she won against BJP candidate Mrinal Kanti Debnath. She is also a close aide of Mamata Banerjee and protested against the farm laws, claiming that the new agricultural laws would leave the small and marginal farmers helpless. She claimed that the new farm laws were passed to benefit the multinational and corporate houses.

She was vocal about how Mamata Banerjee had fielded more than 40 women in the 2021 Assembly election.

South Kolkata MP Mala Roy is now the president of TMC’s “Banga Janani Bahini”. After contesting the 2014 Lok Sabha election unsuccessfully, the ex-Congress leader Mala Roy, known for being critical of TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee, joined TMC. Ex-CPI(M) Rajya Sabha MP, Ritabrata Banerjee will head TMC’s state National Trinamool Trade Union Congress (INTTUC) general secretary. He fell out with CPI(M) after which he joined TMC. The party believes that he could bring some trade union experts to TMC.

Veteran leader Purnendu Basu will lead the “Khet Mazdoor” (farmers’ wing) cell of the TMC. He served as an MLA from the Rajarhat Gopalpur constituency in the 2011 and 2016 West Bengal state assembly election. He joined TMC amid the Singur movement when TMC came to power in 2011. Rajya Sabha MP Dola Sen has been appointed as the president of the Indian National Trinamool Trade Union Congress (INTTUC). She is a close aide of Mamata Banerjee and was helping in Nandigram constituency in 2021 Assembly election.

First-time MLA and former filmmaker Raj Chakraborty is the TMC cultural cell president. Sources close to TMC claimed that the party has been developing many units outside West Bengal. Most of the experienced workers are grassroots workers and have helped TMC in the long run. The experienced leaders will be working to strengthen the party outside of West Bengal.  However, the plan to expand the party properly will require time and momentum. The restructuring of the party is focused on building an honest organization. The party had lost several MLAs, MPs, and panchayat members to the BJP.