Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah on Monday slammed the Mamata Banerjee government for allegedly denying permission to hold one of his three rallies in Bengal and said she cannot stop the BJP’s victory march in Bengal by doing such things.
Addressing a rally at Canning in South 24 Parganas district, Shah also dared the West Bengal chief minister to arrest him for chanting Jai Shri Ram.
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Criticising the state government for denying him permission to land his chopper at Baruipur in Jadavpur Lok Sabha seat, Shah said, “Today I was scheduled to hold three rallies. I have come here to attend this rally in Joynagar but the second rally venue falls under the Lok Sabha seat of Mamata Banerjee’s nephew (Abhishek). Mamata Ji is scared that if I go there, her nephew will lose his seat. That’s why she cancelled permission for my rally. I want to tell Mamata Didi that whether you let us hold the rally or not people have made their mind to defeat the TMC in Lok Sabha polls. People have also decided to give us more than 23 seats from Bengal.”
However, Abhishek Banerjee is contesting from Diamond Harbour Lok Sabha seat and Baruipur, where Shah was scheduled to hold the rally, does not fall under his seat.
“The Mamata Banerjee government is visibly peplexed. She wants to stop me from attending rallies… The TMC can stop me from attending rallies but can’t stop the victory march of the BJP in Bengal,” he said.
Shah’s scheduled rally at Baruipur in Jadavpur Lok Sabha seat was called off on Monday after the state government allegedly denied him permission to land his chopper.
BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya claimed that the district administration denied permission for Shah’s chopper claiming that they were yet to get a clearance from the Public Works Department.
“The District Magistrate is acting as a TMC cadre. They denied permission for Shah’s chopper and later, permission to hold the rally. This is not only undemocratic but also shows the TMC’s authoritarian mindset. We will lodge a complaint with the Elelction Commission,” Vijayvargiya said.
Sources in the BJP said, the party had planned to go ahead with the Baruipur rally despite the state government’s denial of permission, but the land owner, who had rented out his property for the meeting, withdrew his consent at the last minute.
“After the denial of permission to land the chopper, we wanted to bring Amit Shah ji by road from Canning to Baruipur. However, the land owner withdrew his consent at the last minute and was not available for a response,” a state BJP leader said.
A senior police officer said on condition of anonymity, “The land owner informed last night (Sunday) that he no longer wishes to rent his property for the rally. Now the Elelction Commission is taking all decisions regarding permission of rallies. We could do nothing.”
Following the cancellation of the rally, clashes broke out between the BJP and TMC workers at Baruipur after the latter took out a procession. State BJP president Dilip Ghosh said his party workers were thrashed by TMC activists.
“TMC activists had been taunting our party workers over the cancellation of the rally. When our party workers protested, they were beaten up by the ruling party activists,” he alleged. A huge contingent of police has been stationed in Baruipur to prevent any untoward incident.
The TMC, however, denied the charges and said the BJP cancelled its rally fearing low turnout. “These are baseless allegations. We have nothing to do with it. They have cancelled the rally as they were afraid that the rally might turn out to be a flop show,” said TMC secretary general Partha Chatterjee.
The BJP also alleged that the state government denied them permission to hold UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s rally in Kolkata Dakshin constituency on May 15.
In the wake of the events, BJP leader Sunil Deodhar tweeted, “Democracy is a joke in West Bengal… DM & CEO both are working as agent of ruling Trinamool Congress.”
Shah also hit out at Mamata Banerjee for confronting BJP workers for chanting Jai Shri Ram. “Mamatadi gets angry if someone chants Jai Shri Ram. I am chanting Jai Shri Ram here today, if you have the guts, arrest me. I will be in Kolkata tomorrow,” he said. Shah is scheduled to hold a road show on Tuesday in Kolkata Uttar Lok Sabha seat.
The BJP national president reiterated that once they form the new government, they will throw out infiltrators from the country and restore Bengal’s glory. “We will restore the glory of Bengal. Mamata Banerjee has turned Sonar (golden) Bangla into Kangal (poor) Bangla. She is only interested in protecting infiltrators to secure her vote bank. But her vote bank won’t be able to save her from imminent defeat,” he said.
Shah also lashed out at Banerjee for allegedly running a “syndicate raj” in the state and alleged that the TMC works to benefit the Mamata’s nephew, Abhishek Banerjee.
“Earlier, it was the syndicate tax, now it has been replaced by nephew tax. We have to throw out this corrupt government of Bua-Bhatija (Aunt and Nephew). We will defeat this corrupt regime,” he stated.