Dilip Ghosh re-elected Bengal BJP president (With an additional inputs)

Kolkata, Jan 16 (PTI) With an eye on the 2021 assembly polls the BJP on Thursday re-elected Dilip Ghosh, who is credited for the growth of the saffron party in West Bengal, as president of its state unit for the second consecutive term.

Ghosh being the only nominee for the post was elected unopposed as West Bengal BJP president for 2020-2023 at the state committee meeting here.

BJP national general secretary Murlidhar Rao handed over the certificate to him.

Ghosh's re-election to the top post came just days after his controversial remark that anti-CAA protesters 'were shot like dogs' in BJP-ruled states drew sharp criticism both from the opposition and his party men.

During Ghosh's tenure as state president, the BJP witnessed a meteoric rise in West Bengal bagging 18 out of the 42 parliamentary seats in the state.

After being re-elected Ghosh said he will fight to win the 2021 assembly elections in the state.

'I will continue to fight and won't stop till BJP forms the next government in West Bengal,' he said.

Hitting out at the opposition, Ghosh said 'There are a few people who are criticising me for my comments. I want to make myself clear that the time has come for BJP. Earlier, they (parties opposed to BJP) used to speak and we listened, now we will speak and they will listen'.

According to state BJP sources, Ghosh's re-election reaffirms the confidence that the party's top brass has in him ahead of the crucial assembly polls.

'West Bengal assembly polls will be the most crucial polls for us. With just a year left for it, the party top leadership felt that they need a leader like Dilip Ghosh to lead the state unit. Despite his controversial remarks, his credit in the growth of the party cannot be taken away,' a senior BJP leader said.

Ghosh controversial remarks time and again have not only drawn the ire of the opposition parties but also from leaders from his own party. He, however, remained unnerved and did not retract.

He was first appointed as the state president in December 2015. Though his term ended in December 2018, he was asked to continue for a year due to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections in which he won the Midnapore seat. PTI PNT KK KK