Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Deb has triggered a fresh controversy with his remark that the BJP has plans not only to expand across the length and breadth of the country but in neighbouring countries.
Speaking at a party event in Agartala on 14 February, Deb raised eyebrows when he disclosed former BJP president Amit Shah’s alleged plan to expand the party in Nepal and Sri Lanka and establish party’s governments in the two countries.
Deb recalled a meeting with Amit Shah ahead of the 2018 Assembly elections in Tripura. Shah was then the BJP’s national president. It was at this meeting, he said, Shah had discussed the alleged plan to spread BJP’s presence in Nepal and Sri Lanka.
Hailing the leadership of Amit Shah as the party president, Deb said, “Amit Shah, who was then BJP national president, had told us that the party was planning to expand its footprint and establish its rule in Nepal and Sri Lanka during a close interaction with several members at the state guesthouse here.”
Amit Shah served as the president of the Bharatiya Janata Party from 2014 to 2020.
Biplab Deb claimed that the BJP would form government in Kerala and would change the trend of the Left and Congress coming to power alternately every five years. Like Kerala, BJP would form a government in Tamil Nadu.
“In Kerala, there will be no CPM and Congress because Narendra Modi and Amit Shah have already reached there. BJP will come to power in Tamil Nadu too. There will be no government other than BJP,” he said.
Deb’s reference to Nepal and Sri Lanka drew a sharp response from the Indian National Congress (INC) which accused the BJP of interfering in the internal affairs of other countries.
“This attitude of BJP is anti-national and anti-democratic. We respect our neighbouring countries and there is no justification to interfere in the internal affairs of these countries,” vice-president of Tripura’s INC unit Tapas De said on 15 February.
Under fire over chief minister Biplab Deb’s comment, the BJP said it has been spreading Indian culture and philosophy in different countries.
BJP spokesperson Nabendu Bhattacharya said, “Our work to spread our Indian culture and philosophy in different countries apart from India started long ago. Contesting elections is not our prime agenda. We focus on winning the hearts of people of different countries.”
CPI(M) veteran leader and former party secretary Bijan Dhar declined to comment on Deb’s statement.
Biplab Deb is no stranger to controversy. In April 2018, he had said the internet existed in the days of the Mahabharata. However, the media finds him funny even when he isn’t. In August that year, when he claimed that ducks raised oxygen levels in water bodies, media giggled — only to shut up when experts endorsed his view.
While the story of Biplab Deb claiming that Amit Shah wanted to establish the BJP in Nepal and Sri Lanka appeared first on NDTV, it remains to be seen whether the media house discovers by tomorrow it was an exaggeration made in jest.