BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya on Monday accused West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of “sponsoring” violence against his party workers following the TMC’s win in the state polls, and asserted the results cannot be deemed a setback for the saffron party as it has made “unprecedented” gains despite the defeat.
Vijayvargiya, who is in West Bengal, said BJP president J P Nadda will be on a two-day visit to the state from Tuesday as an expression of solidarity with the party workers and meet the families affected by the violence.
The BJP will hit the streets against the Trinamool Congress for the violence Banerjee has “sponsored against our workers”, Vijayvargiya, who is his party’s in-charge for the state, told PTI.
Four BJP workers have been killed and over 4,000 houses ransacked in incidents of post-poll violence, he alleged.
On the assembly poll results, Vijayvargiya downplayed the suggestions it was a blow to the BJP as the party ran a high-octane campaign with a target of winning over 200 seats in the 294-member assembly.
The Left-Congress alliance, he claimed, “compromised” with Banerjee-headed TMC and “disappeared” from the electoral field, allowing their vote bank to shift to her party, which won 213 seats.
Both the Left and the Congress drew a blank, an unprecedented development in the state’s poll history. The BJP won 77 seats, its highest tally, but much below its expectations.
Vijayvargiya, however, asserted the party’s performance must be seen in the context of its previous tally of merely three seats and vote share of nearly 10 per cent in the 2016 assembly polls.
“A setback happens when you make losses. Has any party made such a rise in any state? We have made unprecedented gains. The state politics is now absolutely bipolar with other parties like the Left and the Congress wiped out,” he said.
The BJP leader said sympathy factor might have also worked to Banerjee’s favour who had campaigned mostly on a wheelchair.
The BJP also announced a nationwide dharna on May 5 against the violence, and said these protests will be held following all Covid-19 protocols.
With the BJP attacking her for the violence, Banerjee in Kolkata urged supporters to maintain peace, asking them not to react to provocations.
The central forces committed many atrocities on TMC supporters during the elections, she alleged.
“Even after the results were announced, BJP attacked our supporters in certain areas but we ask our men not to get provoked and instead report to the police,” Banerjee said.
She alleged that some police officers had worked in a partisan manner against the TMC during the elections.
The BJP tweeted that Nadda will be visiting West Bengal in view of the widespread post results retributive violence unleashed on BJP workers and supporters by criminal elements in the TMC cadre.