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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Mamata govt cannot stop infiltration as it believes in minority appeasement: Amit Shah

In a strong message to the ruling Trinamool Congress as he wound up his two-day trip, Shah said his party is not threatened by attacks such as the one on party president JP Nadda’s convoy last week and will work towards building a strong base in Bengal ahead of the Assembly elections in the state next year.

By: Express Web Desk | Kolkata, New Delhi | Updated: December 20, 2020 9:19:17 pm
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On the second day of his visit to West Bengal, Union Home Minister and senior BJP leader Amit Shah targeted Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee over “increase in political violence and corruption in the state under her tenure”. In a strong message to the ruling Trinamool Congress as he wound up his two-day trip, Shah said his party is not threatened by attacks such as the one on party president JP Nadda’s convoy last week and will work towards building a strong base in Bengal ahead of the Assembly elections in the state next year.

“Political violence is at its peak in Bengal. More than 300 BJP workers have been killed and there has been no progress in investigation into the deaths,” he said in a press conference on Sunday. Condemning the attack on Nadda’s convoy, he said, “We condemn the attack by Trinamool supporters on our national president during his Bengal tour. And I condemn it personally as well. BJP believes that in a democracy everyone should have the right to voice their views. I want to tell all Trinamool leaders that they mustn’t be under the impression that that they can stop us with such attacks. We will work to establish our base in West Bengal,” he said.

Claiming that infiltration in Bengal has also increased manifold, he said the current government cannot stop it as it believes in minority appeasement. “Only BJP can do it,” he asserted. He also said that even though Mamata Banerjee claims support to the farmers’ protest on the Delhi border, she doesn’t let cultivators in Bengal avail the benefits of schemes introduced by the Centre.

Amidst BJP-TMC war of words, Amit Shah launches road show in Bengal People at Amit Shah’s roadshow in Bolpur on Sunday.

Bengal yearning for a change, says Amit Shah in Bolpur roadshow

The Union Home Minister said the people of Bengal are yearning for change (of government) to get rid of political violence, corruption, extortion and infiltration of Bangladeshis. Overwhelmed by the huge turnout in Bolpur on Sunday, Shah said he had never seen such a roadshow in his life and this shows people’s love towards Prime Minister Narendra Modi and anger towards Mamata.

“I have attended and organised several roadshows in my life but have never seen one like this. This roadshow is a reflection of people’s anger against the Mamata Banerjee government. This crowd reflects people’s faith in the agenda of development of Narendra Modi Ji,” Shah told the massive crowd. He said if voted to power, his party will restore the state to the glory days when it was called ‘Sonar Bangla’ (prosperous Bengal) within five years. He said wherever BJP has formed government, the states have started their journey on the path of development. “However, Bengal deviated from the path of development,” he added.

Amidst BJP-TMC war of words, Amit Shah launches road show in Bengal Amit Shah in Bolpur on Sunday.

“I have attended and organised several roadshows in my life but have never seen one like this. This roadshow is a reflection of people’s anger against the Mamata Banerjee government. This crowd reflects people’s faith in the agenda of development of Narendra Modi Ji,” Shah told the massive crowd. He said if voted to power, his party will restore the state to the glory days when it was called ‘Sonar Bangla’ (prosperous Bengal) within five years. He said wherever BJP has formed government, the states have started their journey on the path of development. “However, Bengal deviated from the path of development,” he added.

Amit Shah visits Visva-Bharati, pays tribute to Tagore

Earlier in the day, he also visited Visva-Bharati University in Santiniketan and paid floral tribute to Rabindranath Tagore at Rabindra Bhavan. He said as the central university, founded by Bengal’s cultural and literary icon, nears its centenary year, the bard’s teachings should spread to the far corners of the world. “Tagore has not only enriched the philosophy and literature of India, but also made Santiniketan a base for connecting Indian culture to that of many other countries,” Shah told the media at the end of his two-hour-long visit to the university campus.

Amit Shah arrives in Visva Bharati.

He said the bard’s teachings point to the fact that the purpose of education is to overcome narrowness and embark on a journey towards truth. About Tagore’s contribution to the freedom movement, he said that there were two views of nationalism, the chief proponents of which were Mahatma Gandhi and Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, and both derived their inspiration from Tagore. “I firmly believe that it was not the Nobel prize that acknowledged Tagore’s work, it found its own acknowledgement by honouring Tagore,” Shah said. The home minister said the Nobel laureate also left his mark with his contribution to empowering villages through better healthcare and cleanliness.

Amit Shah’s lunch at folk singer’s home

Shah visited the residence of a ‘Baul’ (Bengali folk) singer in Bolpur and was treated to a traditional Bengali lunch. He listened with rapt attention as Basudeb Das Baul and his family performed a popular folk song ‘Tomay Hrid Majhare Rakhbo’ (will keep you in our hearts) with ‘ektara’ (single-stringed folk instrument) as the BJP leader arrived at his residence ‘Manohardham Kutir’, in Ratanpally area. Shah, accompanied by senior leaders Kailash Vijayvargiya, Mukul Roy, Dilip Ghosh, Rahul Sinha and Anupam Hazra, savoured the delicacies –– ‘palong saak’, ‘alu posto’, ‘begun bhaja’, ‘nolen gurer payes’ and ‘nalen gurer rosogolla’ –– sitting on the floor of Das’ house. He also offered puja at their Shiva temple. Das said, “We are privileged that such an important person visited our residence. We are overjoyed.”

On Saturday, Shah had welcomed Trinamool deserters into the BJP fold, setting the tone for a bitter election campaign in Bengal. He gunned for Didi with phrases such as “this is just the beginning” “you will be alone” by the time the polls start. At a public meeting in Midnapore, the stronghold of former state transport minister Suvendu Adhikari who quit the Trinamool and joined the BJP along with Bardhaman Purba MP Sunil Kumar Mondal, nine MLAs and several others, Shah sought a 5-year mandate for the BJP, promising to turn the state into ‘Sonar Bangla’. He also claimed that his party would form the next government with 200 seats – there are 294 seats in the Bengal Assembly.

Urging the people to oust the Trinamool, he lashed out at Mamata, saying, “Today, under the leadership of Suvendu bhai, all good people from the Trinamool, Congress and CPM have joined the BJP to work under the leadership of Narendra Modi. Didi says BJP engineers defections (dal-badal). Didi, I have come here to remind you: which was your original party? Was it the Trinamool Congress? When you left Congress to form Trinamool, wasn’t that defection?”.

“Today, as Bhai Suvendu, opposing injustice and exploitation of the people of Bengal, has left your party to be with Modiji, you call it defection? Didi, this is just the beginning. By the time the elections come, you will be alone. Mamata didi probably never imagined the kind of tsunami I am witnessing in Bengal.”

–– With PTI inputs

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