The BJP on Sunday forwarded an open invitation to Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader and state Minister of Transport Suvendu Adhikari to join it. The TMC, in response, accused the Opposition party of making attempts to divide it.
State BJP president Dilip Ghosh said the party’s doors were open to all. “We are ready to accept leaders from other parties and the doors are always open. If the TMC sends its leaders to us, then we will accept them,” he said.
BJP MP and Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) state president Saumitra Khan said, “If he [Suvendu] wants the development of Bengal, then he must leave the TMC. He is a state minister who has understood that for the interest of the people of Bengal the present state government needs to go from power. As a brother, I would appeal to him not to waste any more time and join the BJP.”
BJP’s bid to weaken TMC
With this open invitation, the BJP is trying to send a message to other disgruntled TMC leaders who might want to join it. Defections will not only boost the BJP’s strength ahead of the 2021 Assembly polls, but also improve its prospects of making electoral gains. A leader of Adhikari’s stature will help any party gain control of Purba Medinipur district, which consists of 16 Assembly constituencies.
The invitation to Adhikari came at a time when he is reported to be distancing himself from the ruling party. He has been conspicuous by his absence at party and government programmes, and his presence and speeches during bannerless public gatherings organised by his supporters have a different political undertone. Sources said he was unhappy with the TMC, and is trying to set up a political outfit of his own in a number of districts. Adhikari was not available for comments on the BJP’s invitation.
TMC MP Saugata Roy said, “Suvendu is a popular leader of our party and is an asset. Dilip Ghosh is giving provocations to divide our party. The BJP knows very well that it cannot do anything on its own strength and that is why it is depending on leaders from other parties to give it strength.”
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