In a sign of how bitter the 2021 Assembly elections in West Bengal promise to be, Mamata Banerjee kicked off the Trinamool Congress’s campaign, tearing into the BJP and calling the party a “dustbin of lies” and the “biggest curse to the nation”.
Addressing a rally at Bankura — from where BJP leader Amit Shah launched his party’s campaign earlier this month — Banerjee said, “The BJP is not a political party but a mithyer puro dustbin (a whole dustbin of lies). Whenever elections arrive, they bring up the issue of Narada (sting operation) and Saradha (scam) to intimidate Trinamool leaders. But let me tell them very clearly, I am not afraid of the BJP or its agencies. If they have the guts, they can arrest me and put me behind bars. I will fight elections from jail and ensure the Trinamool’s victory.”
To make her point, she referred to the RJD’s good showing in the recent Bihar Assembly elections despite Lalu Prasad being in jail. “Even Lalu Prasad Yadav has been put behind bars but he ensured his party’s good performance. The BJP’s win (in Bihar) was through manipulation and not through popular mandate,” she said.
She also accused the BJP of offering money to Trinamool Congress MLAs to switch sides.
“They are calling Trinamool workers and offering money. They are saying, we will give you 2 crore, cross over. They are telling an MLA, I will give you 15 lakh now, 15 lakh later. Is this a political party? They are a disgrace,” she said.
Banerjee also accused the Communists of joining hands with the BJP to avoid arrests in the Sharada scam. “The Left of the past has become the new BJP,” she said.
Dismissing talk of the BJP coming to power in the state, the CM said, “A few people are under the illusion that they (BJP) will come to power, so some people are trying to take a chance. But I want to say this clearly, there is neither any chance nor ‘by-chance’ for the BJP to come to power. We will again return to power with a bigger mandate.”.
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