Bengal ready for Mamata Banerjee’s ‘visarjan', says BJP’s Dilip Ghosh as polls draw close
The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) West Bengal unit president Dilip Ghosh on Saturday said that the people of the state were ready for chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s ouster as the assembly elections’ dates near. He made the remark ahead of the meeting with fellow party leaders to discuss the candidates for the third phase of assembly elections in Bengal.
“We have decided on candidates for the first two phases of the election. We will be discussing candidates for the next three phases. People are ready for her (Mamata Banerjee) 'visarjan' (immersion),” he told news agency ANI.
Ghosh’s statement comes days after Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Banerjee announced her candidature from the Nandigram assembly constituency instead of her traditional Bhawanipore seat from where she won in the last two terms. The BJP has fielded the chief minister’s former aide Suvendu Adhikari, who recently switched parties, from Nandigram. The BJP aims to win a majority of over 200 seats in the eastern state, where if Banerjee wins again, it will be her third term as the chief minister. The BJP, however, hasn’t announced its chief ministerial candidate yet.
Ghosh was in Delhi to attend a meeting at the residence of BJP’s national president JP Nadda. Union ministers Amit Shah and Jitendra Singh, Bengal leaders Mukul Roy and Suvendu Adhikari, and Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal, his cabinet colleague Himanta Biswa Sarma also reached Nadda’s home for the poll meet, according to news agency ANI.
The crucial meet comes at a time when two main contenders, BJP and TMC, in Bengal have been training guns at each other over an alleged attack on Banerjee hours after she filed her nomination from Nandigram in East Midnapore. The chief minister suffered injuries on her leg, neck and waist, according to doctors.
While Banerjee claims she was deliberately attacked by four to five people, the BJP has alleged that she was trying to turn an accident into a "pre-planned conspiracy." Both the parties met officials of the Election Commission of India on Friday to lodge their complaints about the incident. “Injuries to Mamata Banerjee in Nandigram were not a result of an unfortunate incident but that of a conspiracy. The events leading up to the attempt on her life leave no doubt that the attack was part of a deep-rooted conspiracy,” TMC MP Saugata Roy told reporters.
The BJP delegation that met the EC hours later demanded a probe into the incident. “The party also requested the election commission to make public the video of Banerjee’s rally in which she got injured,” said party general secretary Bhupender Yadav.
The allegations from both sides come as the state is set a witness a high-stake battle in eight phases of poll starting March 27 and ending April 29. The votes will be counted on May 2.