Will meet on the political battlefield, Subhendu Adhikary’s message to Trinamool Congress at Nandigram

West Bengal cabinet minister Subhendu Adhikary, a popular leader of the ruling Trinamool Congress, has been the centre of curiosity for his strained relationship with the party, and there are endless speculations on whether he is severing ties with Mamata Banerjee. There are talks about his possibility of joining the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).  On Tuesday – at the anniversary programme of “Operation Suryoday” at Nandigram of West Bengal’s East Midnapore district – Adhikary made politically significant comments on the “path ahead” for him.

“I have not come here to announce my political future here, or to make any announcements,” Subhendu Adhikary said. “For that, there are political platforms”. He further said that his path has been smooth at times, and the road has been bumpy too in places. “Whatever I have to say on the path ahead, I will say that from a different platform,” Adhikary said. He asked, rather significantly, “Will those who have come to Nandigram today, come here in future too?” This was perhaps directed at the Trinamool Congress, that is organising a meeting in Nandigram later in the day, at a different venue, of which Subhendu Adhikary is not a part.

Trinamool Congress leaders Firhad Hakim, Dola Sen and Purnendu Basu are leading the meeting under the party’s banner in Nandigram on Tuesday. The way things have turned out at Nandigram today, indicates that Adhikary’s path may now have separated from the party. At the meeting venue where Subhendu Adhikary was present, several people were seen wearing T-shirts, bandanas and masks with his name and photographs, asserting their support for him.

Subhendu Adhikary had led the Nandigram movement from the front for the Trinamool Congress, raising a powerful protest in 2007 along with Mamata Banerjee against the former Left Front government’s decision to acquire land for a special economic zone. This was one of the major movements that made the Trinamool Congress gain public support that helped it wrest power from the Left front government in West Bengal eventually in 2011.

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