Updated: October 12, 2021 7:17:11 am
THE INCLUSION of several leaders from West Bengal in the BJP’s National Executive Committee indicates how the party views the state in terms of increasing its political capital. However, the inclusion of leaders such as Rajib Banerjee in the committee has raised eyebrows within the party. A former state minister turned BJP leader, Rajib Banerjee has not been attending party programmes after the state Assembly polls earlier this year and expressed his wish to join his former party.
“He is not keeping in touch with the party after elections. He has met senior TMC leaders in a bid to rejoin his former party. He also openly criticised our party for fielding a candidate against Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in the recent Bhabanipur bypoll. In all probability he is likely to quit the party. Under such circumstances, his inclusion in the committee will upset workers and leaders,” said a senior BJP leader on condition of anonymity.
Rajib Banerjee has been appointed as a special invitee member to the national executive committee.
However, a large number of party leaders from Bengal, including those who came from the Trinamool Congress, were included in the committee. It includes actor Mithun Chakraborty, party’s Rajya Sabha MP Swapan Dasgupta, former TMC MP Dinesh Trivedi, former TMC leader Bharati Ghosh, party’s Ranaghat Dakshin MLA Mukut Mani Adhikari, Syama Prasad Mookerjee Research Foundation’s honorary director Anirban Ganguly, Balurghat MLA Ashok Lahiri, party MPs Jayanta Roy, Debasree Chaudhuri, Roopa Ganguly and others.
The party also retained senior leaders Kailash Vijayvargiya, Arvind Menon and Amit Malviya who are in-charges for West Bengal.
“This shows how serious the party is about West Bengal. We want to consolidate the results we achieved in recent elections and build the organisation. If someone thinks that the party has forgotten Bengal after Assembly polls then they are wrong,” said the BJP leader. According to sources, the party is focusing on 2024 Lok Sabha polls and making preparations much before time to win as many seats as possible. On the other hand, it is also an attempt to stop the defection of party leaders to the TMC and therefore sending a message to fencesitters.
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