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Prashant Kishor to Meet TMC Leaders on Thursday to Highlight BJP’s Slippery Track, Weaknesses

All senior TMC leaders, district presidents, MLAs and MPs have been asked to attend poll strategist Prashant Kishor’s session in Kolkata on July 11.

Sujit Nath | News18.com

Updated:July 8, 2019, 2:16 PM IST
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Prashant Kishor to Meet TMC Leaders on Thursday to Highlight BJP’s Slippery Track, Weaknesses
File photo of Prashant Kishor.
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Kolkata: Almost a month after Mamata Banerjee roped in poll strategist and JD (U) vice-president Prashant Kishor for the 2021 Assembly polls in West Bengal, all eyes are on his extensive brainstorming session with the TMC leaders on Thursday.

All senior Trinamool Congress (TMC) leaders, district presidents, MLAs and MPs have been asked to attend Kishor’s session at Kolkata’s Nazrul Mancha auditorium, where he will emphasize on countering opposition workers at the booth level and on what went wrong in the 18th Lok Sabha elections that went in favour of the BJP.

The TMC suffered a major setback in the general elections and won only 22 out of the 42 seats in Bengal. In 2014, the party had won 34 seats. The BJP managed a big jump from only two to 18 seats – forcing Banerjee to hire Kishor for doing the poll arithmetic ahead of 2021 Assembly elections in the state.

Speaking to the News18, a senior TMC leader said on the condition of anonymity: “Prashant Kishor will hold his second session with the party members on July 11 at Nazul Mancha at Southern Avenue in South Kolkata. Earlier, it was decided to organise the meet at ‘TMC Bhawan’ at North Pachanna Gram at Topsia, but to keep the media persons at bay, the venue has been changed to Nazrul Mancha.”

“All senior party leaders were told that they must attend this session where Kishor will deliver a speech with some facts and figures related to the Assembly seats and the voters concerned. He is also likely to present his report on Dalits, Muslims, Matuas and tribal issues through a powerpoint presentation. It will basically be a session on highlighting Opposition’s weak points and keeping an eye on their slippery tracks,” he added.

On June 19, Kishor had his first meeting with the TMC leaders at the party office at Topsia near Science City auditorium. The meeting was an interactive session, meant to understand the problems in handling the situation on the ground level – especially after BJP managed to make inroads in Jungalmahal and in North Bengal.

Like the previous one, the upcoming session is also a hush-hush affair as most party leaders are not willing to disclose details of the meeting.

In a recent television interview, Banerjee had claimed that “it may be possible that poll strategist Prashant Kishor will extend his services to TMC as a part of corporate social responsibility (CSR).”

“It is not necessary that everybody has to work for money,” she had said.

Asked why Banerjee, an immensely popular leader who understands the pulse of the public in Bengal, needs Kishor to chalk out a political strategy, she had said, “This is party’s internal matter and I don’t want to discuss it. Those who are in the corporate sector do CSR activities. It may be possible that it is his CSR initiative. Taka niye kono kotha hoy nai (There was no talk on money).”

“If someone wants to work willingly without asking for money, what is the problem? Let him work,” she added.

On June 7, Banerjee held a two-hour meeting with the poll strategist in Kolkata. The meeting between the two held special significance, given the rise of the BJP in Bengal and the political threat that its rise poses for her.

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