Violent clashes between BJP and Trinamool Congress supporters have been taking place in West Bengal with frightening regularity both during and after the Lok Sabha elections. After the killing of three BJP and one TMC supporters in a bloody clash in Basirhat, there have been more such clashes in other districts. Last night in Mathabhanga, Coochbehar, motorbikes of BJP supporters were set on fire after a local TMC leader was attacked.
West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi met Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi on Monday to apprise him about the current situation. There have been demands from BJP circles to impose Central rule in the state, but the Centre is unwilling to allow Mamata Banerjee to gain any political advantage.
In Aaj Ki Baat show on Monday night, we telecasted detailed stories of how villages and localities, where voters gave their votes to Modi, are being targeted by TMC activists. The ruling party in the state is out to teach a lesson and strike terror in the minds of those voters who have leanings towards the BJP. This is being done in view of the assembly elections that will take place in 2022.
Clearly, Mamata Banerjee has learnt this political style from the Left Front, whose supporters used to target TMC activists during the Left rule. Mamata Banerjee had then demanded Central rule, but when the then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee refused to oblige, she resigned from the NDA government. Five years later, the people of Bengal themselves voted the Left out of power and handed over the baton to Mamata's party.
In a cruel irony of fate, the same Mamata Banerjee is now using the violent methods against the BJP, after the latter won 18 Lok Sabha seats last month. Naturally, the TMC supremo is fearing the same fate that had befallen the Left Front. Mamata and her party men may try their utmost to muzzle the voice of the people, but it is the people who are the ultimate arbiters.
Mamata Banerjee should know that silence of the majority does not mean weakness. It will be a terrible political blunder. As far as imposing President's Rule is concerned, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is never going to do this. Modi is an astute politician and he will never give Mamata a handle to beat the Centre with.
Moreover, the opposition parties in India, who have been badly defeated at the hustings, will get a fresh breath if President's Rule is imposed in Bengal. This can provide an opportunity to the opposition parties to unite. Modi is not going to oblige by giving any such chance either to Mamata or to the opposition parties.
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The government must identify such people and action must be taken against them. Inciting people in the name of religion and injecting communal poison in a civil society is a crime.