BJP indulging in religious polarisation in West Bengal, says Shiv Sena’s Saamana
Targeting Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over alleged religious polarisation in the run-up to the West Bengal assembly polls, Shiv Sena on Monday had a word of advice for West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on chants of ‘Jai Shri Ram’. An editorial in Sena mouthpiece Saamana said that BJP has identified the “weak point” of Banerjee as chants of Lord Ram “irritate” her.
“When she [Mamata] rose to speak at a government function in the presence of the Prime Minister, the crowd started slogans of ‘Jai Shri Ram’. She got irritated and called it her insult. BJP in Bengal has identified Mamata Banerjee’s weak point and till the elections, they will continue to attack [her] on such issues. According to us, she should not have got irritated...Had joined them [BJP] instead, the tables would have turned. But everybody looks at their vote bank,” the editorial said.
The advice came at a time when Shiv Sena is expected to contest around 100 seats in the assembly elections in Bengal. Senior party leaders are going to visit Kolkata early next month to chalk out the party’s strategy for the polls.
On Saturday, Banerjee lost her cool over sloganeering at a Netaji event in Kolkata and refused to give her speech in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The editorial said that the BJP has started “religious division” like it did in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. It added that Banerjee is responsible for the same happening in her state. “BJP has decided to spark religious divide in a planned manner over the issue of Hindutva... Like Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, it has started religious polarisation in West Bengal. To an extent, Mamata Banerjee is responsible for it. Excessive secularism and leaning towards the Muslim [community] is pinching the majority... Key leaders of BJP have started a campaign of violence and terror in Bengal,” the Marathi daily said.
Over the allegation of BJP in Bengal that the CM is backing bomb-making factories in the state, the Sena mouthpiece asked that if that is the case, why are Central agencies, allegedly busy targeting Opposition in other states, not cracking down on them.