BJP national president Amit Shah on Thursday launched a scathing attack against the Mamata Banerjee government for “spreading violence” in the state and said her government will not stay in power for long if it continues to do so. Addressing a public meeting at Simulia in Purulia, Shah asked people to bring about a change in the state by “uprooting the TMC”. He further said BJP was coming to Bengal after winning 19 states and raised the slogan ‘Ebar bangla, parle shamla’ (This time Bengal, save it if you can).
“I pray to god to give strength to our party workers in Bengal so that they can uproot the TMC from here. TMC did not let our candidates file nomination papers for panchayat polls. Later they resorted to violence to prevent the people from casting their vote. After the election, they killed our workers for helping our party win panchayat seats. If Trinamool Congress thinks that through violence they can continue to remain in power in Bengal, then I would like to challenge them that the sacrifice of our workers will not go in vain and their government will not last long,” said Shah said.
Asserting that violence is not the culture of Bengal, Shah slammed the TMC for allegedly killing BJP workers in the state. “Today, sounds of Rabindrasangeet are getting drowned in bomb blasts. In Purulia, three BJP workers were killed. About 20 BJP workers were killed across the state. Around 1,341 BJP workers have been injured in violence. A total of 65 political workers have been killed in West Bengal recently. Despite such ruling party violence, BJP flags are flying high in about 7,000 gram panchayats where our candidates have been elected,” Shah said.
Shah met the families of BJP workers Trilochan Mahato and Dulal Kumar, who were found dead in Balarampur block of Purulia recently. Another worker, Jagannath Tudu, was allegedly killed by TMC workers before the panchayat elections. The BJP chief felicitated all three families with shawls on the dais.
On central coalition
The BJP national president slammed Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s efforts to form a “grand alliance” with other political parties and asked her to focus on West Bengal instead of Delhi.
“Mamata Banerjee wants to form a grand alliance by uniting all political parties (Opposition) in the country. I want to tell her we have no objection to it as we want to see a free and fair election. But first, she must take care of her own state as she is steadily losing ground,” Shah said.
Claiming that the BJP will emerge as the number one party in the state in 2019, Shah said, “In 2014, BJP was in the fourth position and today the party has come to the second position. In 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP will become the number one party in Bengal after winning more than 22 seats here. We have identified 22 seats in Bengal but left out Purulia seat in that list. Today, I have come here to add Purulia as the 23rd seat we will win in 2019,” he added.
‘Where have central funds gone?’
Shah also attacked the state government for not implementing the Modi government’s schemes despite getting more funds from the NDA regime as opposed to the UPA one. He alleged that such central government funds have been amassed by the TMC’s syndicates.
“Development schemes of Modi government are not reaching the people of West Bengal because of TMC government. Under the UPA government, the 13th Finance Commission gave West Bengal only Rs 1,32,000 crore while in the 14th Finance Commission, the BJP led government gave Rs 3,60,000 crore for the development of the state. Where have these funds gone?” said the BJP chief.
‘Only bomb-making factories running’
The BJP chief further claimed that Bengal has not seen development under the current regime, but TMC goons have been empowered.
“All factories have shut down in the state and only bomb-making factories are running successfully. New investments are required here but here only chit fund, sand mafia, coal mafia and cattle mafia raj are thriving here. Only goons of TMC have benefited. The TMC has failed to prevent Bangladeshi infiltrators from entering the state. If you want to put an end to all this, you have to vote BJP to power. Only BJP can end such things,” he said.
Before visiting Purulia, Shah offered prayers at Tarapith Temple in Birbhum and then interacted with BJP workers. After arriving in Purulia, Shah took part in Jan Sampark Abhiyan and interacted with the people of Lagdah village. He also gave them booklets in Bengali which chronicle the achievements of the Modi government. However, a booth committee meeting with local BJP workers could not be held due to security reasons. After interacting with the villagers, he attended the public meeting at Simulia before returning to Delhi.
Referring to his temple visit, state minister Firhad Hakim said, “He said he asked Tara Maa to give them strength. But Tara Maa will not answer their prayers because she will not listen to a person who has created riots in the country.”