Accusing the state BJP unit of trying to mislead people on central forces, state Congress president Adhir Chowdhury Tuesday said that the Union government might send a nominal number of central forces as a ‘face-saver’ for the BJP state leadership.
“The state BJP unit is behaving as if it is the government. According to the Constitution, the Centre speaks to the state. But in this case, state BJP leaders are claiming that they have spoken to the Union Home Ministry about the forces,” Chowdhury said.
Chowdhury made the comment in the light of state BJP president Rahul Sinha’s assertion that he had spoken to the Centre and the central forces would arrive to conduct free and fair polls — a comment which invited all-round criticism from political parties, including the TMC, Congress and CPM.
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“What right does he have to make such an announcement? Even if the Centre sends central forces, it would be only a face-saver for the BJP state unit, which has been making tall promises and misguiding the state on the issue. The party is talking about it because it wants to retain its relevance among people otherwise it will be clear they had an understanding with the TMC,” Chowdhury said while addressing a ‘meet the press’ programme.
Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee Monday had slammed the BJP state leadership for trying to challenge the constitutional authority of the state.
Talking about the prospects of his party in the upcoming KMC and municipal polls, Chowdhury said, “Our main aim is to retain the seats which we already have with us and try to regain lost ground.”
He said the party may had joined hands with the CPM and TMC at the Centre in the past, asserting that in politics no one was “untouchable”, but at present the mandate for him is to make the party stronger here in Bengal.
Referring to the role of the State Election Commission (SEC), he said the party cannot rely on it.
“The SEC has expressed its inability to go against the state. We had seen an exception in Mira Pande, the previous SEC. Had the present SEC been serious about deploying Central forces, he would have deferred the poll process,” he said.
Chowdhury blamed the TMC regime for letting loose “rampant violence” in several parts of the state and intimidating Congress workers and candidates.
“In near about 30 per cent seats, we have failed to field any candidates just because of the violence by the TMC. We have no faith in the SEC,” he said.