The approaching West Bengal Assembly elections are said to be the most crucial elections in the state in quite a while for its people and attributes. The state has seen uninterrupted rule of Trinamool Congress, led by Mamata Banerjee for the last 10 years. In the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections, BJP turned the tide in the state by receiving 41% of the votes cast and proving itself to be a strong opposition against TMC. BJP has seen many new additions to the party from Bengal and MLA’s who have quit TMC and joined the party recently.
The competitive spirit of the election campaigns has increased as BJP tries to give it all their attention. Union Minister, Amit Shah was recently in Bengal for a two-day visit and after cracking down on TMC during that visit, it is said that his next is likely to be in January. Shah will probably be in Kolkata on January 12 to attend an event to mark Swami Vivekananda’s birth anniversary and address a public meeting in Howrah.
Amit Shah will also visit the state for a week every month from February next year. PM Narendra Modi will address the centenary celebrations of the Visva-Bharati University, Shantiniketan on December 24, 2020, via video-conferencing, in the presence of the Governor of West Bengal and Union Education Minister.
On his recent visit to Bengal, Amit Shah exuded confidence and challenged the TMC about winning the next election by a majority. In reciprocation of BJP’s conviction of winning, TMC’s election strategist, Prashant Kishor, on Tuesday, raised the stakes and said that he would quit his work as a poll strategist if the BJP manages to achieve the feat. He also questioned whether BJP leaders would give up their posts if they fail to win 200 seats in the upcoming State Assembly elections.
Now, a BJP member, Suvendu Adhikari has also been making optimistic statements about BJP winning. He called for the “parivartan of parivartan” in his first rally after making the switch. Adhikari said, “We will defeat them. We will win. We will build a new Bengal, a golden Bengal”. This was a dig at Mamata Banerjee, as the word ‘parivartan’, was Banerjee’s rallying cry in her campaign to oust the Left in 2011.
The upcoming days will see fierce competitiveness between TMC and Mr. Adhikari, as they are set for competitive rallies soon. TMC MP, Sougata Roy and senior minister Firhad Hakim are in Mr. Adhikari’s home turf, Kanthi in East Midnapore district tomorrow, for a rally. Mr. Adhikari will do a road show there on Thursday. There are concerns about the two sides entangling in a discordance.
Interestingly, months before this key election, BJP is side-stepping their stance and their take on the implementation of the controversial CAA and NRC bill in lieu of advocating it and using it, like they did during last year’s election. After his recent visit to Bengal, in an interview, Amit Shah said, “Rules for CAA are yet to be framed. Because of coronavirus, the exercise on CAA cannot take place. When the vaccination process starts and we manage to break the cycle of the coronavirus, we will think about it”. He dodged more questions pertaining to the topic.