West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Thursday that the Trinamool Congress party will contest the 2024 Lok Sabha elections alone, reported The Hindu.

Banerjee’s comments came after Congress candidate Bayron Biswas won the Sagardighi bye-polls in the state on Thursday. The party chief accused Congress and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) of having an immoral alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party.

“The BJP, the Congress and the CPI(M) have a ‘give-and-take relationship’”, Banerjee claimed. “In the coming days, we will end their political drama. We should not listen to CPM or the Congress, the ones that work with BJP, we cannot ally with them.”

The West Bengal chief minister said that the Trinamool Congress will fight alone with the support of the people. “There will be an alliance of the Trinamool Congress and the people,” she said. “...Those who want to defeat the BJP will vote for us, that I believe... and those who will vote for the Congress and the CPI(M) will vote for the BJP. This has been proved true today.”

Last week, Congress had said that it would form the government at the Centre in 2024 along with its allies. Veerappa Moily, chairperson of the Congress’s Political Affairs Committee that deals with alliances, had said that the party will hold talks with Banerjee and other leaders of Opposition parties for the 2024 elections.

“We will sort out issues and work with Mamata, Nitish Kumar and K Chandrashekar Rao,” Moily told NDTV. “We need to lead the alliance, and we will work together and ensure all come together. Congress needs to be strengthened and only when we are strong, can we lead.”

However, on February 22, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had accused the Trinamool Congress of helping the Bharatiya Janata Party in Goa and in Meghalaya ahead of the Assembly elections in the northeastern state.

“You know the history of the Trinamool Congress, the violence and scams that take place in West Bengal,” Gandhi had said while addressing a rally in Shillong. “You are aware of their tradition. They spent a huge amount of money in Goa [elections] and the idea was to help the BJP. That is exactly the idea in Meghalaya. The Trinamool Congress’s idea in Meghalaya is to ensure that the BJP is strengthened and come to power.”

Gandhi’s comments had drawn a sharp rebuke from Trinamool Congress National General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee, who said that the Congress was irrelevant, incompetent and insecure.