Updated: March 14, 2020 8:29:07 am
Every morning, Trinamool Congress MLA Jayanta Naskar spends a good amount of time washing his own statues — two life-size statues and one full bust — at his Bagulakhali home in Chunakhali in South 24 Parganas district.
Naskar, the two-term MLA from Gosaba, says that he got his own statues made because he doesn’t trust that his supporters or relatives would get his statue made after his death. “We are politicians. We have many enemies. When we will die, nobody knows. I can die any day. After my death, my relatives may not install my statues. So, I decided that I will get my own statues made,” says 71-year-old Naskar, who is guarded by 11 policemen.
According to sources in the police, Naskar has been attacked by miscreants on at least two occasions, but he managed to escape every time. For the last three years, his security has been increased taking into account his threat perception.
Gosaba in South 24 Parganas is infamous for political clashes. During the Left Front government, there used to be frequent clashes between CPM and RSP and TMC.
Best of Express Premium
Naskar belongs to a political family. His elder brother, Chittaranjan Naskar, was a Congress leader and was defeated by the CPM in 1977 Assembly elections. After his death in 1987, Jayanta took over his political mantle and contested from Gosaba for three consecutive times — 1996 from Congress, 2001 from TMC and 2006 from TMC again, but he lost in all the three elections.
He won from Gosaba on his fourth attempt in 2011 as a TMC candidate. Even as the Left Front lost power in the state in that Assembly elections, infighting in the ruling TMC kept Gosaba simmering with clashes.
Standing beside the two life-size statues that bear an uncanny resemblance to him, Jayanta Naskar says that he looked for an “exceptional artist” to make the statues.
“After a long search at Kumartuli (the hub of idol makers) in Kolkata, I finally found one. I visited Kumartuli at least seven times in two months so that the statue maker could use me as a model for the statues. The artist told me that if I was physically present there, the statues will look more accurate. After three long months, the artist made a clay statue of me. From that clay statue, three fibre statues were made,” Jayanta Naskar says.
However, the MLA has no plans to install the statues till he is alive and they will remain in the close confines of his home. “I do not want these statues to be placed anywhere before my death. I do not even speak about it to my party colleagues. But I got them made because if I die, then my close relatives and friends may use install these statues of me,” says Naskar, who has five children.
🗞 Subscribe Now: Get Express Premium to access our in-depth reporting, explainers and opinions 🗞️
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.