India

‘BJP in Bengal is nothing but TMC 2.0’

‘Tell me, one BJP coverage that Mamata has opposed and is preventing tooth and nail?’
Be it Article 370, instantaneous triple talaq, be it CAA/NRC/NPR, be it be awarebandi, FDI, she has aligned with the BJP.’

IMAGE: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee meets Home Minister Amit Anilchandra Shah in New Delhi, September 19, 2019. Photograph: @HMOIndia/Twitter

 

“RSS/BJP people have been working for the last 20 years in Bengal under the umbrella of the TMC and now, one by one, these alleged TMC leaders are going back to the mother ship,” Mohammed Salim, Communist Party of India-Marxist politburo member and the Lok Sabha member from Raiganj in West Bengal, tells Swarupa Dutt/Rediff.com in half two of a multi-part freewheeling interview.

Why is it that we do not see Congress or Left rallies in Bengal? The elections are lower than two months away. The BJP has begun its propaganda juggernaut, Mamata has been holding rallies as properly.

I’m sorry to say that is as a result of the media doesn’t cowl our rallies. For the final three months, through the lockdown interval, the Left has been holding mega rallies, far bigger than the BJP ones, in rural Bengal, in cities, in districts. That is why there is a groundswell of assist for the Left now.

You see, we do not take reporters in air-conditioned buses to cowl our rallies.

If the media covers the BJP and Centre like the best way they need to be lined, they are going to be slapped with tax raids, Enforcement Directorate summons, like what occurred to Newsclick. Or you can be termed anti-national and hounded. Nobody gives you interviews.

After 10 years, the CPI-M received a point out in the primary web page of the Telegraph (the Kolkata each day newspaper) and solely due to Manik Sarkar’s rally. Obviously, as a result of he is the ex-chief minister of Tripura.

Now, have a look at this. I had a rally at Arambagh that day, an enormous rally. The Times of India carried a report, ‘Ex-Tripura CM Manik Sarkar addresses rally in Burdwan’ on the entrance web page. Then one other report alongside, saying, ‘Huge BJP rally at Baroipur’.

But it was simply an abnormal rally, not even by Nadda (BHaratiya Janata Party President Jagat Prakasg Nadda) or Shah (Home Minister Amit Anilchandra Shah). Yet it received protection (laughs uproariously).

Sorry, but that is the journalism of the day.

What was the thought behind aligning with the Congress regardless of the catastrophe of 2016?

Today it is a combat to avoid wasting Bengal, oust the Trinamool Congress and on the similar time forestall the BJP from bidding for energy.

In 2019, there was an all-India Modi wave after Balakot and Pulwama and the BJP’s high-octave marketing campaign, the place quite a few guarantees have been made. So votes went to the BJP as a result of individuals have been disgusted with the Trinamool.

Now, what is occurring is that individuals who voted for the BJP are seeing corrupt, tolabaaj (extortionist), chit-fund tainted leaders of the opposite occasion on stage with Shah or Nadda as a substitute of being in jail. People now really feel hoodwinked.

The BJP in Bengal is nothing but TMC 2.0.

The anti-incumbency issue has already set in for the TMC.

For the BJP, there is anti-incumbency sentiment in phrases of the farmers’ protests, fall in gross home product, the horrific migrant labourers mismanagement throughout Covid, unemployment and so forth.

The Left is aware of Bengal very properly. The Left, Congress and the Indian Secular Front bidding for energy is to make sure the state is not offered on the Trinamool’s market or the BJP’s mela. All are welcome to hitch us.

How many seats do you give your alliance?

No, I am unable to say that. I’m not Amit Shah (laughs). We will determine on seat sharing with the Congress this week and on February 28, we could have a mega rally on the Brigade Ground the place we are going to introduce those that will probably be contesting the elections, to the individuals.

The Bengal election is most likely probably the most high-stake election after Uttar Pradesh for all of the events concerned.
The BJP stays your largest opponent. Why did you not think about tying up with the TMC to defeat a typical ‘enemy’?

I agree with the primary a part of your assertion, but not the second.

Do you actually suppose the BJP is the TMC’s opponent? You might imagine so, but I do not. And in public (life), we name them opponent, not enemy.

Do you recognize that Mamata Banerjee mentioned in an interview to the BBC that the BJP was her pure ally? Tell me, one BJP coverage that Mamata has opposed and is preventing tooth and nail? Just one.

The Citizenship Amendment Act/National Register of Citizens.

That’s pure gossip. When entire of Bengal was saying ‘No’ to Modi, Mamata Banerjee organised some avenue present with some actors and actresses (in opposition to CAA/NRC). But in Parliament, they didn’t combat doggedly in opposition to CAA/NRC, other than (TMC MP) Mahua Moitra’s speech.

When Modi got here to Bengal, the individuals have been so upset with him, that he could not drive from the airport to the Raj Bhavan. He took a helicopter.

Mamata went and surreptitiously met him. There was no agenda, no politics, apparently. But from that point onwards, she agreed to the National Population Register.

She went to establish land for detention camps and met Amit Shah in Bhubaneshwar and promised to assist him on the difficulty.

Be it Article 370, instantaneous triple talaq, be it CAA/NRC/NPR, be it be awarebandi, FDI, she has aligned with the BJP.

The RSS grew in Bengal in the final 10 years below the aegis of the TMC.

Mukul Roy or Suvendu Adhikari, (each previously with TMC and now with the BJP), do you suppose they have been from TMC?

RSS/BJP individuals have been working for the final 20 years in Bengal below the umbrella of the TMC and now, one after the other, these alleged TMC leaders are going again to the mom ship.

As you rightly identified, sure, we wish to cease the BJP from diving into Bengal politics.

Trinamool is the diving board. If you wish to make the BJP nostril dive to their finish, you must take away the diving board from below their ft

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