West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on 25 November took a rally at Bankura ahead of the 2021 Assembly election in the state. Speaking at the rally, she dared the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to arrest her, adding the Trinamool Congress (TMC) will win even with her in jail.
“If the BJP has guts, let them arrest me. I will ensure TMC victory in polls from jail itself,” she said. The chief minister called the BJP a “garbage of lies” and the “biggest curse of the nation”.
Election to the 294-member West Bengal Assembly is due in April-May. The TMC is ruling the state since 2011.
Mamata Banerjee alleged that the BJP was trying to poach TMC MLAs by attempting to bribe them. She said that some people are acting as fence-sitters who are under the illusion that the saffron party might come to power in the state.
“The BJP is not a political party but garbage of lies. Whenever the election arrives, they bring up the issue of Narada (sting operation) and Saradha (scam) to intimidate TMC leaders.”
“But let me tell them very clearly, I am not afraid of the BJP or its agencies. If they have the guts, they can arrest me and put me behind the bars. I will fight elections from jail and ensure the victory of the TMC.”
She referred to Lalu Prasad Yadav, saying that despite him being lodged in the jail, his party performed well. “Even Lalu Prasad Yadav has been put behind bars but still he has ensured his party’s good performance. The victory of the BJP (in Bihar) is through manipulation and not through popular mandate,” she said.
“Few people are under the illusion that they (BJP) will come to power, so some people are trying to take a chance. But I want to say this clearly, there is neither any chance nor ‘by-chance’ for the BJP to come to power. We will again return to power with a bigger mandate.”
Meanwhile, West Bengal BJP chief Dilip while addressing a ‘Cha-Chakra’ (chat over a cup of tea) programme in Birbhum district, said the state has turned into “second Kashmir” as terrorists are being arrested every day and illegal bomb-making factories are being mined every other day.
“West Bengal has turned into second Kashmir. Everyday terrorists are being arrested and illegal bomb-making factories are being unearthed every next day. The only factory that is working here is the bomb-making factory,” Ghosh said.