Kolkata, Jun 11: Senior TMC leader Saket Gokhale on Tuesday claimed that three BJP MPs from West Bengal are in touch with the party and the saffron party's tally in Parliament would soon come down to 237.

The comments drew sharp reactions from the West Bengal BJP unit, which dubbed the claim as "baseless" and asserted that the state unit stands united.

The Trinamool Congress secured 29 out of 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal.

The BJP, in contrast, faced a significant setback, dropping to 12 seats from the 18 it won in 2019.

"As of today, the numbers in the Lok Sabha are BJP: 240 INDIA: 237. Three BJP MPs in West Bengal are in touch with us and there will be a nice surprise soon. After that, BJP: 237 INDIA: 240.

"Modi's creaky coalition is a temporary structure which isn't going to last very long," Gokhale, a Rajya Sabha MP, posted on X.

In the just-concluded Lok Sabha polls, the BJP with 240 seats fell short of a majority but the NDA secured the mandate with 293 seats. The Congress bagged 99 seats while the INDIA bloc got 234 seats. Following the polls, two Independents who won have also pledged support to the Congress, taking the INDIA bloc tally to 236.

Reacting to Gokhale's claim, BJP state spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said the TMC is "daydreaming".

"Since 2014, the TMC has been daydreaming of becoming the pivotal force in the union government but its hopes were dashed not once but thrice. The BJP and NDA stand united. No BJP MP from Bengal is in touch with the TMC," he said.

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New Delhi (PTI): Union minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday led the ruling National Democratic Alliance's efforts in reaching out to opposition parties to build a consensus on the choice for the Lok Sabha Speaker.

The NDA candidate for the key parliamentary position will file his nomination on Tuesday, the day scheduled for the process.

Sources said the senior BJP leader spoke to Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, and DMK leader and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Stalin among other opposition leaders in efforts to build a consensus.

They said that nomination could be filed for the deputy speaker's position too, but added it will depend on various factors, including the opposition's stand.