Claiming that “Bengali Indian Muslims” of West Bengal are different from “illegal migrant Muslims”, the BJP has said that the former look to the party as their guardian.
“In West Bengal, Bengali Indian Muslims do not feel any insecurity. They have a lot of faith in BJP, because we support them morally and emotionally. They feel B JP is the right party and (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi the right leader,” said Sidharth Nath Singh, BJP secretary in charge of the state.
The BJP, which has launched an aggressive campaign in West Bengal to “uproot” the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) government, has been targeting the “Bengali Indian Muslims” as its key support base.
According to him, Bengali Muslims feel that “Bangladeshi migrants” have eaten into their welfare scheme share. He added that consecutive governments and main political parties — the CPM, Congress and TMC —never addressed the issue as they looked to the migrants as a vote bank. So, the BJP started working with them, said Singh. “We have been supporting them against atrocities committed by Bangladeshi infiltrators,” he added.
Singh argued that the recent ‘ghar wapsi’ controversy has not had any impact on the party’s increasing influence among the minority community in Bengal, where Muslims constitute 25-30 per cent of the population. “People have realised that it has nothing to do with the BJP. There are certain groups working on it and the blame cannot be put on the BJP. BJP has nothing to do with them,” he said.
Meanwhile, Centre’s support to the Bengal government in making the recent investment summit a success has triggered speculation that the BJP is softening its stance against TMC. Singh, however, ruled out any such possibility.
“As far as the relationship between the Centre and the state, the BJP will try to improve it. But we will continue our political attack against the Bengal government. In fact, I would like to ask Mamata Banerjee why was she calling it Bengal Global Summit? You should have called it Centre-Aid summit. Of the 93,600 crore investment the state government bagged through the summit, Rs 78,700 came from the central government,” Singh said.