“People have made up their mind to end political violence, tolabaji and syndicate raj of Mamata Banerjee”: JP Nadda

News Desk: People in West Bengal are jaded with “corruption, political violence, and lack of opportunity”, and they will vote for the BJP to bring real poriborton, BJP national president J.P. Nadda has said.

In an interview, Nadda accused Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress of “misgovernance”.

The use of the word “poriborton” by the BJP chief and other leaders of the party during the campaign is meant to target Mamata, who first swept to power in 2011, after over three decades of Left rule, on the promise of “poriborton”.

Nadda said the Trinamool Congress is corrupting the culture of politics by linking it with tolabaji and “involving party cadres in (collecting) cut money” from beneficiaries of government schemes. He also accused the chief minister of promoting the “syndicate raj” operated by her nephew, the Trinamool MP Abhishek Banerjee.

He cited allegations of rape and physical assault against some Trinamool members to claim women were unsafe in the state.

“People have made up their mind in this election. Mamata is going after the results are announced in May and the BJP is coming to power. It is certain, we are seeing a groundswell of support everywhere,” he said.

“People have made up their mind to end political violence, tolabaji and syndicate raj of Mamata Banerjee. How can Bengal progress if such an atmosphere continues in Bengal?”

‘Their game is over’

The BJP has never led West Bengal, but has made massive strides in the state in recent years. It is currently being seen as the prime rival of the Trinamool Congress in the coming election, with many members of the Bengal-based party defecting to the BJP in the run-up to the elections.

Nadda said Mamata is “making false claims of governance”. “If her claim is right, why is there so much unemployment and no penetration of industry,” he added.

Weighing in on Mamata’s poll slogan, “Khela Hobe (let the game begin)”, Nadda said “unka khela ho chuka (their game is over), now it is the turn of ‘vikas hobe’ and ‘development hobe’”.

The BJP president also took a jibe at Mamata’s bid to project herself as the “daughter of Bengal”, pointing to allegations of Trinamool Congress members attacking women. Earlier this month, the BJP had accused Trinamool Congress members of assaulting the 85-year-old mother of a party worker — an allegation denied by the Trinamool Congress.

“Our 80-year-old mothers who have been assaulted by TMC workers, they are also daughters of Bengal. Daughters of Bengal have been involved in human trafficking. Daughters of Bengal have been raped, they all are daughters of Bengal and Mamata ji will have to answer for these charges,” he said. “She can’t protect herself by saying ‘I am daughter of Bengal’.”

Asked why the BJP couldn’t devise a pitch to rival Mamata’s, by projecting Trinamool defector Suvendu Adhikari as “the son of Bengal”, Nadda said “this is not a question of daughter and son… fighting elections”.

“The issue is misgovernance, misrule, Bengal people have made up their mind to vote against Mamata, whichever caste they are from.”

The BJP is making a serious push in the Medinipur region — comprising Purba and Paschim Medinipur — that is seen as the stronghold of Suvendu Adhikari and his family.

Union Minister Home Minister Amit Shah made his third visit to the area earlier this week and held a roadshow, as did Nadda.

The Adhikari family has dominated politics in Medinipur over the last two decades. In the first phase of the election, most of the seats where the BJP is hoping to gain due to the Adhikari family’s organisational strength are in Medinipur and nearby Bankura, where Shah and Nadda have taken charge of the campaign.

Adhikari is contesting the election from Nandigram against Mamata.