In a sensational and seemingly ridiculous charge, a West Bengal minister on Sunday claimed that the Bharatiya Janata Party might attempt to assassinate West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee before the state Assembly elections’.
“Unable to challenge her on the political stage, the BJP might plot to kill Mamata Banerjee in desperation before the 2021 Assembly elections,” said Bengal Food and Supplies Minister Jyotipriyo Mullick claimed in North 24 Parganas on Sunday.
“The BJP first tries to assassinate one’s character. Later on, they try to get rid off their opponent Bengal,” the Anandbazar Patrika quoted Mullick as saying.
Mullick had made the exact same charge in 2015, too.
West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh reacted to the astonishing charge and said, “It is evident that the Trinamool Congress has conceded defeat before the elections and they are trying to gain sympathy by making all baseless arguments.”
Meanwhile, TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee slammed senior BJP leaders Kailash Vijayvargiya and Dilip Ghosh calling them ‘goondas'. He also lashed out at former minister Suvendhu Adhikari who quit the TMC and called him ‘corrupt’ for having ‘sold his spine to the BJP’.
Few days back West Bengal Minister of Panchayats and Rural Development Subrata Mukherjee had made similar allegations. “If BJP doesn't win by fighting the election against Mamata Banerjee, they may conspire to assassinate her by sending people secretly,” the minister had said.
‘Kailash Vijayvargiya and Dilip Ghosh are goondas’
Addressing a rally at Diamond Harbour, Abhishek Banerjee said, "BJP leaders like Kailash Vijayvargiya and Dilip Ghosh are 'goondas'. Dilip Ghosh has threatened to beat up and even kill anyone who protests against the BJP and its supporters. He has even threatened to beat up the police. They are spineless leaders."
He emphasised that the TMC focuses on development and the party will promote the candidates chosen by the Mamata Banerjee. Urging people to vote against the BJP, Abhishek said, "I know you have many issues against the BJP and its leaders, but instead of blocking roads and throwing stones, show your anger through your votes in the EVMs (electronic voting machines)."
The TMC leader's remarks came in the backdrop of the stone-pelting at BJP president JP Nadda's convoy earlier this month in Diamond Harbour when senior party leaders including Kailash Vijayvargiya sustained injuries.
Slamming Suvendu Adhikari and senior BJP leader Mukul Roy, Abhishek said, "They said 'Bhaipo' (nephew) is 'Tolabaaj' (extortionist). I challenge them to prove it. Instead, they are the ones who are involved in the Sarada and Narada scams, not me. The CBI is investigating them. And still, they call me corrupt. Look at their temerity."
Taking a jibe at Adhikari, who had on Saturday spoken about how he was ashamed of his 21-year-long association with the TMC, Banerjee said, "He is a hidden enemy like the coronavirus. If he is ashamed for having been associated with the Trinamool for 21 years, then why is he still living in the same household with his father and brother? Isn't he ashamed? His father and brother are still in TMC. He has sold his spine to the BJP."
The newly inducted BJP leader in West Bengal, Suvendu Adhikari had in his address to party workers at the BJP office in Kolkata said: "The political party I had been associated earlier has no discipline now. It has turned into a company from a party. I am ashamed of having associated with the party for 21 years."
Banerjee further said those wanted to leave the TMC for their selfish ends could do so as Mamata Banerjee does not require them and she enjoys the support of people. "If they have the courage, let them set up their own parties as Mamata Banerjee did. Let us see where they stand then," he added.
(With inputs from ANI)