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Didi’s Nephew Abhishek Emerging As The New Power Centre In TMC

Ever since his appointment as general secretary in June this year, Trinamool Congress leader Abhishek Banerjee has been wielding enormous clout in the party. No, it has nothing to do with him enabling his aunt Mamata Banerjee to return to power for the third time in West Bengal. Of course he is credited with hiring election strategist Prashant Kishor who enabled the TMC to overcome jinx of incumbency. But at the heart of hero-worshipping the 34-year-old Diamond Harbour MP is a deeper tale of heart-burn. Abhishek has become so powerful in the TMC, that now no one feels the need to queue up before the aunt. They feel now it is better that issues of organisation and state issues are left with bhaipo (nephew in Bengali). And the bua or pishi (aunt in Bengali) is left to handle higher, national-level goals. Yet what has upset the TMC rank and file is the manner in which Abhishek has given away Rajya Sabha seats from Bengal to outsiders — like Sushmita Dev and former Goa CM Luizhno Faleiro. While many don’t grudge Sushmita who hails from Assam as she speaks Bengali, Faliero being rewarded with RS berth, has not gone down too well. Faleiro was entrusted with responsibility of spreading the TMC in Goa and doesn’t seem to have delivered much on ground.