The All India Trinamool Congress on Wednesday charged the ruling BJP with being ‘arrogant’ for having a majority in Parliament but a suspension would not deter Mamata Banerjee-led outfit and the members of Parliament from raising people’s issues.
“If they do not allow us to raise voice and people’s issues in Parliament, we will raise it outside,” said protesting Trinamool Congress MP Dola Sen.
“They are arrogant about having majority….It is our responsibility to raise people’s voice inside Parliament and if necessary also outside,” she told reporters.
Ms Sen, a trusted aide of Trinamool supremo, and her party colleague Shanta Chhetri and 10 other Rajya Sabha members from Congress, Shiv Sena, CPI, and CPI-M have been suspended for the remaining part of the ongoing Winter Session of Parliament.
Opposition MPs including Rahul Gandhi of Congress staged a protest in Parliament premises demanding revocation of suspension of 12 Rajya Sabha members.
The Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Malikarjun Kharge raised the issue and urged Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday to revoke the suspension, which was rejected.
Wednesday’s proceedings in both the Houses too have been marred by sloganeering and repeated adjournments.
Trinamool Congress chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Ms Banerjee is meanwhile on a trip to Mumbai for meeting Shiv Sena and NCP top leaders. She met Aditya Thackeray and Sanjay Raut of Sena on Monday.
To a question on NCP leader Nawab Malik stating that the ‘desired’ opposition unity is not possible by keeping Congress out, a Trinamool source in Delhi said: “It is too early to talk about any formal Opposition alliance for 2024 general elections”.
On Tuesday, another lieutenant of Mamata Banerjee, Derek O’ Brien said, “We are not electoral allies of Congress. TMC fought the polls in May alone. We want opposition unity but we are not duty-bound to be anybody’s rubber stamp”.
The TMC leaders insist that while NCP and Shiv Sena run a coalition regime in Maharashtra in alliance with the Congress, the DMK, the CPI(M) and the CPI have been electoral allies of the Congress.
“Trinamool Congress is expanding outside Bengal and it’s the right of every political party. However, we believe that a united Opposition front is not possible excluding Congress. Sharad Pawar sahib has clarified this several times,” said NCP leader Nawab Malik, also known as a close aide of the NCP chief Sharad Pawar.
Besides Trinamool, the Shiv Sena and Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP also have been trying to maintain a distance from Congress.
Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP is set for a fierce electoral contest in Punjab where the Congress is its main opponent.
The Congress-Trinamool Congress bitterness has increased manifold after several Congress leaders and MLAs in various states including Goa and Meghalaya have joined the party.