Former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav on Monday declared his support to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the upcoming assembly elections in the state.
Yadav said he will support Mamata "to defeat the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) who wants to win by spreading hatred".
"We will support Mamata Banerjee in the West Bengal Assembly elections to defeat BJP who wants to win by spreading hatred. In 2017 as well, they won in Uttar Pradesh by propagating hatred," Akhilesh Yadav said.
In December 2020, Yadav had accused the BJP of trying to 'polarise' the voters in West Bengal to gain electoral mileage in the polls. "BJP has started inciting communal hatred in West Bengal...we do not want BJP to win there and so we have decided to support the TMC," he had said.
Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee on Monday declared she will contest the upcoming assembly election from Nandigram, as she took her battle for West Bengal to the home turf of poitical heavyweight Suvendu Adhikari, who recently quit the TMC and joined the BJP.
That Banerjee chose Nandigram to make the big announcement reflects the TMC supremo's determination to take the BJP, which has launched a spirited campaign to unseat her after a decade-long stint in power, head on.
Addressing a rally here, Banerjee said she is not worried about those joining rival parties as they were hardly areound when the TMC was formed.
Banerjee said these leaders left the ruling party to protect the money "they have looted" in the last few years.
"I have always started my campaign for the assembly polls from Nandigram. It is a lucky place for me. So this time I feel that I should contest the assembly polls from here. I request our state party president Subrata Bakshi to approve my name from this seat," Banerjee said.
(With PTI inputs)