There has been a lot of speculation in the press and the social media about a possible rift between Mamata Banerjee and her nephew Abhishekh Banerjee regarding controlling the reigns of the Trinamul party. Sri Tathagata Ray who was a senior leader of the BJP and recently retired after being the Governor of Tripura had always maintained that blood is thicker than water and he was proved right in the recent reshuffle within the Trinamul party in which Abhishekh Banerjee who was the Trinamul National General Secretary, once again became the number Two man in the Trinamul hierarchy. A twenty member team has been formed by Mamata Banerjee and Abhishekh Banerjee who had earlier been removed as General Secretary has once again been reinducted to the Twenty member committee and possibly to his former post.The opposition parties have not given any importance to the twenty member national committee within the Trinamul party constituted on February 12th,2022 and have ridiculed the move. According to the BJP –

“The TMC has only one post. The rest are unimportant. The party is crumbling because of its internal rife. Planned efforts are on to project a particular leader. May be this entire episode has been staged to divert attention from other important issues. This is not a party but a family matter,” 

said Sukanta Majumdar, BJP’s president in West Bengal.

It re-enforces the belief that Mamata Banerjee who has national aspirations has been trying to groom her nephew Abhishekh Banerjee as her heir and successor. Abhishek Banerjee had been introduced in the Trinamul party by Mamata Banerjee and gradually came into prominence and his ascension to power has been accepted by most of the senior Trinamul leaders. Most people know that there is no scope for dissent in the Trinamul party and only one post that matters in the Trinamul party and that post is of the supremo Mamata Banerjee and the rest of the leaders are nothing but lampposts and would would continue to remain as cup bearers and hangers on in the Trinamul party. No one knew during the rise of the Trinamul party and Mamata Banerjee when she came to power in Bengal that she had dynastic ambitions and people had put their faith on a leader who was single and lived a simple life and was viewed as incorruptible ,who would lead Bengal to prosperity after the long and oppressive rule of the left front. However at present the sensible people have come to realise that Mamata Banerjee is not only a hypocrite but a pathological liar leading Bengal to total ruination.Bengal has become a graveyard of industry and investments with zero employment opportunities. There is an English saying that “a man is known by the company he keeps” and according to the opposition she is not only surrounded by a corrupt bunch of sycophantic leaders but the members of her family have become crorepatis and therefore by logical inference she not only supports corruption but under her protection corruption has increased at a tremendous pace.She like the Nehrugandhis and some of the other political parties have a strong desire to promote her kith and kin and dynasty in India. 

Therefore it is not surprising that there is a great deal of similarity,sympathy and support for each other among the different dynastic parties of India who form the opposition parties. She may have a secret desire to break the congress as she hopes that the congress under the Nehrugandhis would gradually wither away from the political scene and she hopes to take up the national leadership with the help and support of the other disgruntled G-23 leaders of the congress and the other opposition parties. However whether she would be able to realise her ambitions or not in national politics or whether the disgruntled leaders of the congress and the other opposition parties would rally around her is a totally different matter. Personally I believe that her national ambitions is doomed to failure in the long run.

Was there really a rift between her and her nephew Abhishekh Banerjee? Many commentators like Sanmoy Banerjee had repeatedly stressed that projected rift was a clever game played before the municipal elections to show to the disgruntled Trinamul party leaders who have failed to get a ticket in the elections that the supremo Mamata Banerjee was not pleased by the choice of many of the candidates of the Trinamul party which was made by Abhishekh Banerjee in consultation with Prashant kishor in corporate style.

However the ground realities are totally different as those who could pay the maximum money in the auction of the seats were selected and ultimately money and in some cases influence played the biggest part. The blame was tactfully shifted to Prashant kishor and a carefully cultivated animosity was built up against him by some of the leaders of the Trinamul party. Abhishekh Banerjee has also been advocating the “one man, one post” within the Trinamul party which was resented by many in the party. This story of a rift was deliberately done to diffuse dissent and rebellion within the Trinamul party before the elections and Abhishekh Banerjee was shifted to Goa to manage the prospects of the Trinamul party which at any rate has very little chance of success in Goa and it is hoped that somehow in collaboration with the MGP of Goa the Trinamul party may secure a solitary seat. However there is some dissent regarding the style of working of Abhishekh Banerjee by some old time Trinamul leaders like Kalyan Banerjee who was once a stalwart in the Trinamul party and defended Mamata Banerjee and her party leaders and her government in the High court and the Supreme court. Abhishekh Banerjee has curtailed Kalyan Banerjee and his team of lawyers and has put in his own lawyers to represent the party and the government and this has resulted in not only a huge loss of income for Kalyan Banerjee and his coterie but loss of importance. Those leaders whose style of functioning has been affected by Abhishekh Banerjee have developed animosity against him. These leaders like Kalyan Banerjee have repeatedly ridiculed Abhishekh Banerjee while at the same time proclaiming that their only leader is Mamata Banerjee and no one else. Ultimately it appears that these leaders would be on their way out from the position of influence within the Trinamul party.

In a fascist dynastic party like the Trinamul party where politics has reached its lowest depth of degradation and gutter politics there is no scope for healthy discourse . Take for instance the case of Mukul Ray who was once the number Two in Trinamul party but kicked out when Abhishekh Banerjee came into prominence and later he joined the BJP and again after winning for the first time on a BJP ticket from NADIA, he once again defected to the Trinamul but since his defection has been challenged in the High court and may ultimately lead to the supreme court by Suvendu Adhikary of BJP, he ie Mukul Ray has been pretending like a mentally unbalanced person to save his MLA status. Mamata Banerjee has selected him as the Chief of the public accounts committee which traditionally belongs to the opposition and has publicly insisted that Mukul Ray belongs to the BJP forgetting that Mukul and his son Subhrangsu was inducted into Trinamul party by herself and Abhishekh Banerjee earlier. Does this incident not prove that she is a duplicitous person? Wonder of wonders even the Bengal assembly speaker Biman Banerjee who was directed by the court to give his opinion on the actual status of Mukul Ray has now ruled that Mukul Ray belongs to the BJP. Though this is not the end of the matter and in the long run Mukul Ray would probably have to resign if the court rules against him but such incidents proves the corrupt political culture prevailing in Bengal and also in the whole country.

Many years have past and the ruling government in the centre whether the congress or the BJP has not yet brought out any effective Anti defection law. The reasons are quite clear that every party encourages defection and there is an undeclared unanimity and understanding in not introducing any law which would effectively plug out the loopholes in the current Anti defection law in the country.

DISCLAIMER: The author is solely responsible for the views expressed in this article. The author carries the responsibility for citing and/or licensing of images utilized within the text.