Kolkata: Even before the opposition parties meet in Delhi to up the ante against the incumbent government, the Trinamool Congress is ready to set the stage for the anti-Bharatiya Janata Party union. Former Union finance minister Yashwant Sinha, who quit the BJP in April this year, will attend an event in Kolkata organised by the cyber cell of the TMC.

Sinha, who was also the minister of external affairs in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, has been a constant anti-Modi campaigner. Along with another veteran BJP leader Arun Shourie, Sinha has criticised Modi even when he was a BJP member.

However, Diptangshu Chowdhury, the co-convener of the TMC cyber cell, says Sinha has been invited “not because of his political stand but because he is a former finance minister". Sinha will be speaking on black money and demonetisation, Chowdhury said.

“Demonetisation was a policy failure and who better can speak on it than a former finance minister?" Chowdhury said. On several occasions in the past, Sinha has been critical about demonetisation. It was, however, not possible to contact Sinha.

The event, titled ‘Idea of Bengal’, will be held on December 9 in Kolkata and will be divided into three segments. While the first session titled “Black Money and Broken Promises’ will be addressed by Sinha and moderated by TMC lawmaker Derek O’ Brien, the other two will deal with healthcare and Bengal’s pluralism.

Speaking of the event, Chowdhury said it is only normal that a new government will make mistakes, but policy blunders like demonetisation cannot be pardoned. “There is a scarcity of doctors in the hospitals in Bengal, but that is not the state government’s fault," Chowdhury added. According to him, even the TMC government has made mistakes and is willing to rectify them.

TMC leader and the state’s chief minister Mamata Banerjee will be travelling to Delhi on Sunday to meet other opposition leaders. Chandrababu Naidu, Banerjee’s counterpart in Andhra Pradesh, has called for the meeting on December 10. Banerjee and Naidu met at Kolkata last month, where Naidu announced that the meeting earlier scheduled to be held in the end of November has been postponed till December.

Earlier in March this year Banerjee had met Sinha, Shourie and another dissident BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha at Delhi. Banerjee’s “role to save the country is appreciable", the leaders had said after their meeting. Sinha and Banerjee have been cabinet colleagues during the Vajpayee government, in which Banerjee was also a minister.

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