Amidst the party’s internal dynamics debate, Trinamool national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee on Monday said there were no differences with party veterans while underscoring the need for a maximum age limit in politics, citing the decline in work efficiency and productivity with advancing age.
Mr Banerjee, also the nephew of West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee, emphasised the importance of unity, stating, “We have to move ahead with both the old and the new. From the veterans, we need to derive inspiration and guidance on how to put up a fight and how to work for the masses. Similarly, we also need to consider work efficiency and productivity after a certain age.”
Mr Banerjee asserted that like any other profession, there should be a retirement age in politics. “I think there should be a maximum age limit in every field, including politics,” he said.
His remarks come amid a debate between party veterans, considered loyalists of Mamata Banerjee and the younger generation, perceived as close to Abhishek.
When asked about differences with party veterans, Mr Banerjee replied in the negative, saying, “There is no difference between me and anyone else. I have just not attended one programme at Netaji Indoor Stadium. Some individuals have given their opinions. It is okay; I have nothing to say on it.”
Speaking about the recent convention at Netaji Indoor Stadium, where the absence of his picture on the main stage sparked a political debate, Mr Banerjee dismissed it as baseless. “The picture of the chairperson was there; that was enough. It is not necessary to have my picture on the main stage,” he said.
The controversy over old guards versus the new generation surfaced after Mamata Banerjee advocated giving due respect to senior members and refuted the assertion that old leaders should retire from active politics.
Amid reports of a power tussle between the old and the new, party spokesperson Kunal Ghosh said last week that there is no tiff between the old and the new, and the party needs both Mamata Banerjee and Abhishek Banerjee.
The present controversy revived memories of a two-year-old internal struggle within the Trinamool between the old guard and the young faction.
Amidst murmurs of an alleged power struggle, Mamata Banerjee then dissolved all national office-bearer committees, including the post of national general secretary held by her nephew Abhishek Banerjee.
Subsequently, a new committee was formed, and Abhishek was reinstated as the party’s national general secretary.
Since then, Abhishek has not only gained prominence within the party but is also considered a de facto number two in the state’s ruling dispensation.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)