July 26, 2021 1:44:07 am
A day ahead of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s visit to Delhi, the Congress on Sunday tweeted against the alleged snooping on her nephew and TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee, indicating more colseness between the two parties.
Congress’s Twitter handles tweeted: “PM Modi took the adage, ‘keep your enemies closer’ a little too far. #PegasusSnoopgate.” In the sampe post, the party shared a photo of Abhishek saying “Modi govt’s insecurities are endless”.
— Congress (@INCIndia) July 25, 2021
Trinamool Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’ Brien was quick to share the tweet saying, “Khela Hobe (game on)”.
The apparent show of support and increasing closeness between the two parties assume significance as Mamata arrives in the national capital on Monday. The visit is being read in certain quarters as an attempt by the TMC chief to forge a grand Opposition alliance against the BJP, with an eye on the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
Mamata is likely to call on Congress chief Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday and other Opposition leaders later during her stay in Delhi. Sources said the meeting could herald a new chapter of bonhomie between the two parties.
Welcoming the Congress move to raise the issue on its Twitter page, Trinamool Lok Sabha MP Saugata Roy told reporters, “We thank the Congress for condemning the hacking of Abhishek Banerjee’s phone. It would hopefully strengthen the bond between the Opposition parties.”
Congress Rajya Sabha MP Pradeep Bhattacharya said, “In both Houses of Parliament, we have been raising our voice against the phone tapping of our leader Rahul Gandhi and also of other Opposition leaders including Abhishek Banerjee. We strongly condemn this. We have fought against Centre’s policies with the support of Trinamool Congress on several occasions. However, it’s early to say what political turn this (sharing of Congress’s tweet) would take. As of now, it wouldn’t be right to comment on this (tie-up). We have to wait a little longer.”
BJP state vice-president Joy Prakash Majumdar mocked the Congress for “changing partners”. “The Congress, which is in an alliance with the Left in West Bengal, is seeking a new partner. Just like riding a merry go round, they are changing partners at the drop of a hat to suit their political interests. They have no ideology,” the BJP leader said.
A list of possible targets of an alleged surveillance operation using the Pegasus spyware revealed in a global collaborative investigation included the mobile phone of Abhishek. The investigation into the alleged surveillance was led by 16 media organisations, including digital news platform The Wire.
In a Twitter post last week, Abhishek Banerjee referred to the BJP’s defeat in the Assembly elections. “Two Minutes of SILENCE for the SORE LOSERS! Despite ALLIES like ED, CBI, NIA, IT, ECI, BJP money + might and Pegasus Spying Mr Amit Shah couldn’t save his face in Bengal Elections 2021.Please COME Prepared with Better RESOURCES in 2024!”
After the list was made public, BJP MLA and Leader of the Opposition Suvendu Adhikari had said he has details of telephone conversations between Abhishek and police officers.
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