Arch rivals CPI(M) and Trinamool Congress will share a platform for the first time in over a year to attend Bihar chief minister designate Nitish Kumar’s swearing-in ceremony, signaling their respective interest in strengthening bond with the JD(U) ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee have also confirmed their participation for the Friday’s oath-taking ceremony in Patna.
The grand alliance itself saw old foes Kumar and Lalu Prasad bury their hatchets to defeat the BJP-led NDA.
Yechury and Banerjee sat in a programme exactly a year ago when in November 2014, they came for the Congress’ celebrations on the 125th birth anniversary of Jawaharlal Nehru. Yehcury was then a politburo member of CPI(M).
This time, the political urgency is quite palpable.
Trinamool and CPI(M) both are keen to develop ties with Nitish Kumar at the national level.
For the JD(U) too, the Left and the Trinamool are both important as they may emerge as valuable partners for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Yechury announced on Tuesday, “Nitish Kumar called me to invite for the swearing-in ceremony. He also invited Tripura chief minister Manik Sarkar.”
Trinamool responded by pointing out that Kumar had also invited Banerjee and JD(U) spokesperson KC Tyagi personally called up Trinamool’s Rajya Sabha leader Derek O’Brien to re-confirm the Bengal CM’s participation at the event in Patna.
Two months ago, Delhi CM had invited both Banerjee and Sarkar for his ambitious conclave on federal structure. While both CMs came for the event, they took the stage at different time to avoid sharing the dais.