Protests against demonetisation may take an interesting twist in West Bengal.
A Left-backed powerful trade union and the ruling Trinamool Congress have announced protests during the same period.
Both sides are vehemently opposed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious move to feed the Indian economy with new bank notes, but there’s a problem: They are staunch rivals of each other.
A day after CPI(M)-backed CITU announced it will go for a country-wide demonstrations on January 3, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee announced her protest programmes from January 1 to 8.
“From January 1 to 8, Trinamool will organise protests across state with slogan ‘Modi hatao Desh Bachao’,” Banerjee announced on Thursday.
For the CITU, the third largest trade union in the country, Bengal is its biggest area of influence. But with Trinamool also in the fray, there is a question mark on the impact the Left trade union would create.
“What can we do? We can’t match their brash attitude. We announced our programme earlier,” said Tapan Sen, CITU general secretary.
Trinamool sources told HT that while they are planning to make the party programme a success, they also want CITU’s plans to fail.
“What will the CITU do in Bengal? The Left is finished,” said Saugata Roy, senior Trinamool MP and a former Union minister.
The Left is planning another programme for later with other trade unions. But that too might have limited impact as the RSS-affiliated trade union Bharat Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) is set to skip the event.