Mamata Banerjee’s love for a good samosa or cutlet often trumped any serious meeting agenda, poll strategist Prashant Kishor said today, speaking to NDTV on the Trinamool Congress’s spectacular victory in Bengal.
Recalling what he called a “hell” of a campaign for Bengal this time, challenged by the mighty BJP election machinery, Prashant Kishor shared campaign moments with Mamata Banerjee that stood out for him.
“She is more preoccupied by what samosa to eat and what cutlet to try. She does not like long meetings,” said the strategist.
The 63-year-old Chief Minister – now set for a third term – was known to call for samosas from the best neighbourhood shop, or cutlets from her kitchen for strategy meetings. “Snacks are important to her,” Mr Kishor grinned.
Even in her most serious meetings Mamata Banerjee would treat everyone to snacks from her home — that was a great way to bond, he said.
“It was an absolute pleasure working with her. She is extremely receptive about suggestions and an absolute delight to work with,” he said.
Mr Kishore said his relationship with the Trinamool chief was “no client and vendor relationship”. He preferred the term “political aide”.
“No one can hire us; we choose to work with whoever we work with,” he said.
Describing his most anxious moment in the Bengal campaign, he said, “when Didi hurt herself in Nandigram, it was very troublesome for us. We were very worried.” She was the Trinamool’s only big campaigner.
Ms Banerjee finally resumed her campaign in a wheelchair and has not been seen without it since.