Mission Bengal: Host of BJP ministers, including Amit Shah, to visit state

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New Delhi, Dec 17 (PTI) With eye on the 2021 West Bengal Assembly elections, the BJP has been bolstering its campaign in the state on war footing, deploying Union ministers, a deputy CM and central leaders and assigning them six to seven Lok Sabha constituencies each.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah will be in the state this weekend, while his colleagues Gajendra Shekhawat, Sanjeev Balyan, Prahlad Patel, Arjun Munda and Mansukh Mandaviya will be visiting in the next few days, sources in the party said on Thursday.

Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya and Madhya Pradesh cabinet minister Narottam Mishra have also been assigned responsibilities in West Bengal, the sources said.

When contacted, Union minister Patel confirmed that he has been given the charge of the party's poll preparations in north Bengal.

All these leaders will attend a meeting on December 19 chaired by Shah, the sources said.

The Union home minister will be on a two-day visit to West Bengal this weekend. He will address a political rally and have lunch at a farmer's residence in Midnapore.

Amid reports and heightened speculations in some quarters, rebel Trinamool Congress leader Suvendu Adhikari, who resigned as an MLA on Wednesday, is expected to join the BJP in Shah's presence.

Earlier, the saffron party had assigned its office bearers to gather feedback from five different zones of the poll-bound state.

The party has emerged as the main challenger to the ruling TMC, winning 18 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in the 2019 elections, and is leaving no stone unturned in its effort to form the next government in the state. PTI JTR IJT IJT