TMC sounds LS poll bugle with 'Jana Garjan Sabha' in Kolkata; BJP predicts a repeat of 2019

Mamata Banerjee and TMC's Abhishek Banerjee are the main speakers

Jana Garjan Sabha TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee during the mega rally christened 'Jana Garjan Sabha' in Kolkata | Salil Bera

The Trinamool Congress will launch its Lok Sabha poll campaign with the mega rally christened 'Jana Garjan Sabha' on Sunday, which will see TMC chairperson and Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee taking centre stage.

The party is likely to announce its list of 42 party candidates at the rally planned at Kolkata's famed Brigade Parade Grounds. "All India Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee will announce the party's candidates for the 42 parliamentary constituencies in West Bengal," the TMC said in a statement.

Check candidate list HERE.

This is the first time the party will announce its candidate list from a mega public meeting at Kolkata's Brigade Parade Ground, it said.

Lakhs of TMC supporters were seen leaving for Kolkata from various districts to attend the rally. Interestingly, videos showed people from Sandheshkhali, which was recently in the news after women accused TMC leader Shahjahan Sheikh of sexual assault and land grab, leaving the village of

In an earlier post on X, the chief minister had urged supporters to join TMC to "lead the people's movement for Bengal secure future." "Bengal's patience & courtesy should NOT be mistaken for its weakness. The Bohiragoto Jomidars must be reminded of this on March 10. The #JonogorjonSabha at Brigade Ground this Sunday will be a historic event on the land that has always fought for its rights. Join us as we lead the people's movement for Bengal's secure future," she wrote.

While the campaign will focus on taking on the BJP in the state and centre, the overarching theme revolves around the alleged withholding of the state's financial dues by the central government, reported PTI. The TMC has been using this as a plank against the Centre for the past two years. 

The Trinamool Congress has opted for a new set-up this time, with ramps to facilitate closer interaction between leaders and supporters during speeches.

TMC leader Firhad Hakim said the rally at Brigade Parade Grounds will take TMC message to every nook and corner of West Bengal and ensure the defeat of the BJP in all the 42 Lok Sabha seats of the state, the BJP has mocked the party, stating the party's fate would be similar to 2019.

In January 2019, an opposition meeting was held at the Maidan, where leaders from 19 opposition parties joined forces in a display of solidarity. However, the TMC's tally dropped to 22 seats from 34 in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections despite the party's well-entrenched grassroots organisation. Last year, the BJP clocked an impressive performance by clinching 18 seats in the state. 

BJP MP Dilip Ghosh mocked the TMC, saying things won't be different. "Before the last elections, Mamata Banerjee invited all parties of the country for the mega rally. But, a lot of those parties and their leaders failed to reach the Parliament. Mamata Banerjee suffered a loss of 12 seats. The same will happen this time as well. Several parties are in fear, and several Lok Sabha MPs are switching to the Rajya Sabha. Everyone is attempting to face Modi, but let's see what justice do the people do to them," Ghosh said. 

Sources within the TMC suggested the possibility of significant defections from other political parties, particularly the BJP, which has seen eight MLAs and two MPs crossing over to the ruling party in the state since the 2021 assembly polls. 

The BJP has derided the TMC's programme, branding it as the party's "farewell rally". In a countermove, the BJP plans to hold a rally in Sandeshkhali, where allegations of sexual abuse against TMC leaders have surfaced. 

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