The BJP has sounded the poll bugle in West Bengal, with plans to host a Durga Puja in Kolkata and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Puja Ki Baat’ speech that the party said will be telecast at several pandals.
BJP national president JP Nadda said on Monday that Covid-19 delayed the implementation of the CAA but it will happen soon, getting the Trinamool Congress (TMC) riled up.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, if one remembers her ‘CAA CAA chi chi’ slogans, has vociferously opposed the CAA and said she will not implement it in Bengal. Over December 2019 and January 2020, there were nationwide protests over the law which offers citizenship to immigrants from non-Muslim minorities who have fled Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
What Nadda said
Nadda, who was in North Bengal on Monday, said, “As far as the CAA is concerned, it has already been passed in Parliament. All of you will get the benefits of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. We are committed to it.”
“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, its implementation got delayed. But as the situation is slowly improving, the work has started. The rules are now being framed and CAA will be implemented very soon. Under this act all the eligible people will definitely get Indian citizenship,” Nadda said making CAA a major poll plank in Bengal, like it had in Assam.
Nadda claimed that Banerjee had hurt the sentiments of Hindus and had a “divide and rule” policy. PTI quoted Nadda as saying, “On one hand you have Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji who works for the development for all and on the other hand, you have West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who has employed the policy of divide and rule to serve TMC’s political interests.”
‘We’ll show you the door’
Members of the Trinamool Congress were quick to hit back at Nadda. Member of Parliament in the Lok Sabha, Mahua Moitra, took to Twitter and said, “JP Nadda in WB - says CAA to be implemented soon. Listen up BJP - we will show you the door long before we show you our papers!”
Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien issued a statement saying this time of the year in Bengal was not the time for politics, but a time to celebrate.
O’Brien said, “The irony is not lost when the President of the BJP talks about ‘divide and rule’. ‘Divide and rule’ is a ploy learnt from the colonial past and played out deviously every day by your party. Over the last six years, your party had done everything it can to ‘divide and rule’ people of this great nation.”