BJP, Trinamool lock horns ahead of crucial West Bengal polls


BJP, Trinamool lock horns ahead of crucial West Bengal polls

KOLKATA: It all started a decade ago. When the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress had toppled the 34-year-old Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) led Left Front government in West Bengal, they had coined a slogan, Badla Noi, Badal Chai (we dont want revenge, we want change).

But over a period of the last 10 years, the political situation has undergone a sea change in Bengal with the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) rising to the status of arch-rival to the incumbent formation. Taking its vote share from 4 per cent to over 40 per cent in the 2019 general elections, it was indeed an uphill task for the BJP.

A day after the attack on BJPs national President J.P. Naddas convoy, BJP state unit chief Dilip Ghosh said on Friday that he is noting down everything in his red diary and everything will be returned with interest.

Taking a queue from Trinamools catchline, Ghosh has rechristened a slogan: Badal hobe, bodlao hobe (we shall change and we shall take revenge as well), triggering a direct face-off between the ruling Trinamool Congress and the BJP. Ghosh on Friday vowed to take revenge after Naddas convoy was attacked in the South 24 Parganas district on Thursday.

Naddas convoy was allegedly attacked by Trinamool-backed goons with stones, bricks and iron rods while on its way to Diamond Harbour to attend a public meeting. Cars of several party leaders, including that of BJP national General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, national Vice President Mukul Roy and Dilip Ghosh, which were part of the convoy, were damaged in the alleged attack. Nadda, however, escaped unhurt. His party colleague Vijayavargiya suffered injuries in the attack while Roy suffered a fracture in his finger.

The war of words between the clashing political rivals intensified ahead of the forthcoming state Assembly elections, especially after Thursdays attack. Many senior BJP leaders, including Union Home Minister Amit Shah, have slammed the Mamata Banerje-led state administration for failing to provide security to Nadda and called the attack sponsored violence. Shah said that the state has descended into an era of tyranny and anarchy under the Trinamool Congress rule.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Home Affairs also sought a detailed report from the Bengal government over the alleged serious security lapses during the visit of Nadda. Nadda enjoys Z-category security cover.

The Union Home Ministry has summoned the states Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay and Director General of Police Virendra on December 14.

Ghosh had on Thursday written to Shah alleging security lapses during Naddas tour of the state. According to Ghosh, the police failed to provide a smooth passage to Naddas convoy.

The state government is lying. I have never seen such a government in my lifetime that indulges in so much of lies on everything. I am a political person and have been into it for the past so many years. Now Im saying that the law and order situation in Bengal has touched rock bottom and it demands imposition of Article 365 immediately, Roy told mediapersons here.

Trinamool Congress, however, downplayed the attack on Naddas convoy. The partys Lok Sabha MP Kalyan Banerjee said that the police have filed three FIRs in connection with the incident.

BJP leader Rakesh Singh was in a convoy in front of Nadda. He has 55 criminal cases against him and he made provocative gestures at the crowd. An FIR has been registered against Singh and seven people have been arrested in connection with the incident, Kalyan Banerjee said.

He also said that there was some trouble only for 10-15 minutes at Sirakol. He said that the law and order is a state subject and the state had given security to Nadda. He dubbed the move of the Centre calling two state administration officials as totally unconstitutional.

Source: IANS

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