The Trinamool Congress party led by Mamata Banerjee staged a two-day protest sit-in in Kolkata against the BJP-led central government. The protest was sparked by the alleged discrimination by the Centre against West Bengal, as it has not disbursed funds to the state. The protests come ahead of the local body elections in the state and the 2024 general election.
During the protest, an outsized washing machine labelled “BJP” took centre stage. Banerjee used the washing machine as a prop to allege that corrupt leaders are exonerated and spared when they join the BJP. Trinamool Congress leaders shouted slogans while Banerjee put in black cloth, which symbolically “turned white” as she performed the act of “laundering” with a flourish.
The Trinamool Congress national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee also used the issue to pivot his pointed and simultaneous attacks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bengal’s Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari. He made a case for similar punishments for the Prime Minister and the state LoP for allegedly committing the same offence as Rahul Gandhi, who was ousted from the Lok Sabha.
Banerjee questioned why the Prime Minister should not be disqualified from Parliament for hurting the sentiments of all women when he made sarcastic and derogatory statements against the entire women community during his 2021 election rallies in Bengal. He also asked why calling people with Modi surnames thieves tantamount to hurting the sentiments of the entire community, but the Prime Minister is not punished for it.
The protests and allegations made by the Trinamool Congress party have caused a stir in West Bengal’s political landscape, and it remains to be seen how these issues will be resolved in the coming days.