Assembly election result 2018: Countdown for 2019 begins, says Mamata Banerjee on BJP’s setback in state elections
Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee has played a key role in uniting opposition parties against the BJP. She had cheered the Congress when early trends emerged, describing it as a people’s verdict and their victory. As the Congress consolidated its lead in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh and retained an edge over the BJP in Madhya Pradesh, the West Bengal chief minister targeted the BJP again.
The countdown for 2019 has started,” she told reporters, underlining that opposition parties including regional parties were together.
The Trinamool, she said, did not have much of a stake in this election but nevertheless, supported all regional parties in the fray.
All three states — Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh — were won last time by the BJP, which had also won 60 of the 65 total parliament seats in these states in the 2014 general elections.
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Votes are also being counted in Telangana, where K Chandrashekhar Rao’s Telangana Rashtriya Samiti (TRS) has raced to a massive lead, validating his decision to call early elections. In Mizoram, the Congress’ last bastion in the state, the Mizo National Front is ahead.
“Victory of democracy and victory against injustice, atrocities, destruction of institutions, misuse of agencies, no work for poor people, farmers, youth, Dalits, SC, ST, OBC, minorities and general caste,” Banerjee tweeted.
“Semifinal proves that BJP is nowhere in all the states. This is a real democratic indication of 2019 final match. Ultimately, people are always the ‘man of the match’ of democracy. My congrats to the winners,” she said.
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Banerjee was among the 21 opposition party leaders who on Monday agreed to work together to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and “stop their assault on the Constitution and institutions such as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Election Commission” in a key meeting ahead of the Lok Sabha election next year.
The leaders decided to lay a roadmap for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections to oust the BJP from power by evolving a common strategy.
“In the course of the next few months, we will place before the people of the country, a comprehensive programme of work anchored in complete transparency and accountability,” read a joint statement issued after the meeting.
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The parties also appealed to all “liberal, progressive and secular forces to join them in their battle to save the Constitution and protect parliamentary democracy”.