No lobbying in party: Does Mamata practise what she preaches?

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Mamata Banerjee said at the Martyrs' Rally held in Kolkata yesterday that nobody can become a leader in her Trinamool Congress (TMC) party through lobbying. The message was though directed at the critics, but actually it suggested that the party supremo is feeling a bit nervous, something which hasn't happened for a long, long time.

Leaders don't fall from trees: What are the celebrity leaders doing in the Trinamool then?

Who does lobbying in the TMC? Does Banerjee have any definite answer to this query? If she is really concerned about lobby creating leaders in the party, then why is she allowing people from the glamour world to emerge as top faces of the TMC? Are leaders who are committed to the party's cause at the grassroots are getting their dues always? Banerjee quoted Swami Vivekananda, saying leaders never fall from trees but grow from the roots. Is she practising what she is preaching?

Banerjee also said on Monday that one generation formed the party after waging a battle for 34 years and the time has come for another generation to take forward the legacy over another 40 years. This remark of Banerjee certainly speaks about her apprehension about her party's future.

Will Trinamool have a serious problem of succession?

The Trinamool might never find an answer to the question of succession if the current practice persists. Lack of inner discipline in the party is already taking a toll on its health. The TMC might have won 34 seats in the recent Lok Sabha election but one should remember that West Bengal is essentially a state which has no Opposition culture. The same party used to struggle when the Left was at its peak and now the story has just reversed. Banerjee, as the most important influential leader in Bengal politics since the fall of the Left, did not care about this aspect and made it a free-for-all culture after assuming the office of the chief minister.

Mamata never cared for institutionalisation and discipline

The chief minister never thought to nurture a healthy political culture during her three-year rule and promoted people who have little base as people's representatives at her will. She invited filmstars, journalists, painters and people from other walks of life at will to fill up the political vacuum in her party and state and these people have done little except gracing Banerjee's rally stages. The limitless distribution of poll tickets among the celebrities has seen their crowd thickening at TMC rallies. Even celebrities who were known to be pro-Left have changed sides without giving it a second thought.

But how far useful are these celebrities-turned-politicians in improving the task of governance? The recent Tapas Pal fiasco is an example in hand.

The practice of rewarding loyalists have begun to backfire

Banerjee's unjust pampering of her partymen and turning a blind eye to her administrative inefficiency by ignoring crime and offence in the state has started to boomerang. The recent embarrassment caused to the party and the government after two of its members names were found in a FIR filed by Shyam SEL management and the open allegations made by a prominent party leader's son about party members getting involved in criminal activities have left Banerjee worried. Hence was the caution aired on Monday.

Internal threat a worry for Mamata, no matter what she says

Political observers said that Mamata Banerjee was not at her best at Monday's rally, something which wouldn't sound sweet to her loyalists' ears. But if her empire is facing a threat from inside, it is Mamata who led the situation to reach at this stage. Unless Banerjee tightens things from her side, it will become increasingly difficult for her to play her natural attacking game in politics.

At the moment, Mamata Banerjee's Titanic is proudly sailing in Bengal but for how long?

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