Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday chose to reply to Trinamool Congress's recent challenge that Mamata will be contesting from Varanasi in 2024 and said unlike Didi, the constituency will not consider Mamata as an outsider.
"Didi's party is saying now that she will be contesting from Varanasi in 2024 Lok Sabha election. Two things are clear from this statement. One, Didi has accepted her defeat in Bengal. Right or wrong? Otherwise, why will she go outside. Second, Didi is already looking for a place for herself outside the state," PM Modi said at a campaign rally in South 24 Parganas' Sonarpur.
The chief minister's mind must have strayed towards Varanasi because of the waterways that the saffron party-led government developed to connect Haldia and Varanasi, the PM said adding that there is nothing wrong in testing the waters of the Lok Sabha election after being defeated in the assembly election.
"But I want to tell you that my people of Varanasi, Kashi, Uttar Pradesh are so large-hearted that no one will call you an outsider, a tourist or the tourist gang," Modi said.
He further asked referring to the recent controversies that took place in Bengal in the run-up to the elections, how will Mamata react finding so many people with 'choti', 'tilak', chanting Jai Shri Ram and Har Har Mahadev.
Mamata is currently facing one of the most difficult political challenges of her life. She is facing a stiff challenge from BJP in the poll after helming West Bengal for a decade. In Nandigram, she is contesting elections against her aide-turned-rival Suvendu Adhikari who had quit TMC last December and is now fighting on a BJP ticket.