Millennium Post

Eye on Assembly polls: Mamata to hold meeting with TMC leaders tomorrow

Kolkata: Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee will preside over a crucial meeting with all her party MLAs and leaders at Netaji Indoor Stadium in Kolkata on Monday. A set of dos and don'ts, organisational changes and fresh initiatives, with focus on the grassroots level, are likely to be announced.

During the Martyrs' Day rally on July 21, chief minister had hinted at a number of long-term initiatives and programmes for the party. According to party insiders, such programmes are likely to be announced during the meeting.

Trinamool Congress received a setback in the Lok Sabha polls, in which BJP got 18 seats, while TMC won 22. With the crucial Assembly polls in 2021, the TMC chief is in no mood to relent any political space to the BJP in the state. After the polls, Banerjee held a series of meetings with party leaders to ascertain the weaknesses and find ways to tide over them. Secondly, the TMC is also facing challenge from BJP over the 'cut money' issue at the grassroots level.

"We are all waiting for her to speak at the meeting on July 29. During the Martyrs' Day rally, she showed the road map. This meeting will focus on the concrete steps to be taken and long-term party programmes to be chalked out to combat the BJP and reach out to people. Some organisational changes are also expected along with the possibility of some leaders being pulled up," said a senior Trinamool Congress leader, who is close to the CM.

"Earlier during the meeting with state-level leaders, the CM made it clear that a turnaround is possible and Lok Sabha and Assembly polls are different. She had earlier asked MLAs and other public representatives to reach out to people. Due to absolute majority, a minor section of party leaders had been found to be detached with the masses. The CM had warned us against this," said the senior leader.

According to party sources, Banerjee wants to stress on the booth-level organisation this time. She is likely to make proper and permanent party teams at the booth levels. There are around 77,000 booths in Bengal and the party wants to make special booth committees or teams who will work round the year.

Banerjee had earlier stated that she will stress on the party as much as she stresses on governance in Bengal.

"Our chief minister keeps a tab on all MLAs and party leaders. She has her own network. She had earlier made it clear that her directions had to be followed by the book and negligence will not be tolerated. We expect that she will announce a statewide movement against the BJP as well as stress on booth-level party organisation," said a TMC MLA.

Party insiders also stated that this time Banerjee will be careful in choosing candidates for the Assembly polls. She is keen on planning for programmes, through which party leaders and MLAs will reach the doorstep of every voter in every booth of the state.

"She is also likely to announce major programmes against the BJP in Bengal. Using the cut money issue, BJP is trying to harass our grassroots-level leaders. It's time to hit the streets ourselves and confront them," said another MLA.

On Friday, during an administrative meeting at North 24 Parganas, Banerjee was heard asking the MLAs, "I have done a lot of development work in your area, given you a number of projects. What will you give me now?"

(With inputs from Indian Express)

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