Tribune News Service
Kolkata, November 5
BJP leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s tribal outreach programme in Bankura district of West Bengal on Thursday brought good luck to a tribal woman in another part of the state.
Geeta Mahali, who had hosted Shah three years back at her home in Naxalbari village, received an appointment letter from West Bengal government’s home department on Thursday for working as Special Home Guard.
TV grabs showed a teary-eyed Geeta shyly showing her appointment letter to mediapersons who landed at her home after they were alerted by the local TMC leadership.
Day after Shah had lunch at the house of the tribal couple Raju and Geeta Mahali in a much publicised event, the very next day the state’s ruling party Trinamool Congress (TMC) managed to persuade the duo to join TMC.
The turnaround caused much embarrassment to the BJP and Shah who was then president of the party.
Subsequently, the Mahali couple was abandoned and forgotten by both BJP and TMC. Geeta got LPG connection under the Ujjwala Scheme. But, crippled by poverty, the family stopped buying fresh refills.
Shah’s lunch programme on Thursday at the home of Bibhishan Hansda, a tribal living in Chaturdihi village in Bankura district of West Bengal, reminded the state government about Geeta and resulted in her receiving the appointment letter.
Bankura is famous for its “posto” (poppy seed) recipes. Amit Shah and other BJP leaders, including party general secretary Kailash Vijaybargya, had a chance to check out some of the posto delicacies offered to them by Bibhishan, a labourer, and his wife, when the top BJP functionaries had food at his place on Thursday afternoon.
Amit Shah will be around on Friday also and sure enough he has a lunch date on Friday too. This time, he will be hosted by N Biswas at his home at Rajarhat near Kolkata. Biswas belongs to the numerically strong Matua community whose votes are being eyed by both BJP and TMC.
Commenting on the appointment letter handed over to Geeta Mahali today, a BJP leader here said they would be happy if the TMC government gave jobs to all those people who would host Amit Shah.