Thursday, May 30, 2024

Owaisi has been propped up by BJP, alleges Mamata

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has accused the BJP of propping up Asaduddin Owaisi’s party AIMIM so that it enters into poll fray in the state. She said the BJP and AIMIM were planning to divide Hindu and Muslim votes between themselves. Her allegations have been triggered by Owaisi’s decision to contest the forthcoming elections in the state.

After a good show in Seemanchal area in Bihar assembly polls, bordering West Bengal, Owaisi’s next port of call is now this state which Mamata has ruled virtually unchallenged for the last decade. This is giving sleepless nights to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who can lose substantial support among Muslims in the state.

Mamata alleged on Tuesday in Jalpaiguri that the BJP was “giving money” to Owaisi. “To divide the Muslim votes, the BJP is spending crores of rupees. The plan is that BJP will eat into Hindu votes, and this Hyderabad party will eat into Muslim votes. In recent Bihar elections, they did the same thing. This party is a B team of the BJP,” Mamata asserted.

Muslims constitute about 30 per cent of West Bengal population and can prove decisive in 100 to 110 seats in the state. So far, the Muslims have mostly voted in favour of the Trinamool Congress, helping it secure a clear victory against others in West Bengal. A large section of Trinamool leaders believes that AIMIM’s entry into the state can change the equation in many assembly segments, creating unfavourable conditions for them.

Mamata has also accused the Central government of interfering in West Bengal’s jurisdiction by calling some IPS officers on deputation. Challenging the Centre to draw and impose President’s rule in the state, Mamata said the Centre was trying to find alibis to do so.

She has repeatedly said that she will not allow the implementation of National Register of Citizens (NRC), National Population Register (NPR) or the Citizenship Amenities Act (CAA) in West Bengal. These declarations are meant to garner support among refugees spread all over the state.

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