Tribune News Service
Kolkata, December 9
There is no let-up in the BJP’s attempt to polarise the electorate of West Bengal by accusing Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of “Muslim appeasement”.
BJP national president JP Nadda, who arrived in Kolkata on Wednesday for a two-day visit of the state, pulled up the TMC supremo for her refusal to withdraw the order of state-wide lockdown on August 5 in view of the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the Ram temple at Ayodhya.
Nadda, who addressed the audience after inaugurating the BJP election office here, said initially, the state-wide lockdown was also ordered on July 30 but Mamata rolled back the directive after it was brought to her notice that the Muslim festival of Eid-Al-Adha fell on that day.
Nadda, who also inaugurated nine BJP district offices from here by using digital technology, said he had no problem if an order for the lockdown was changed in view of Eid.
“I have nothing against Eid. The festival should be observed. People should embrace each other on the occasion of Eid and have fun. But why not show the same consideration for the foundation stone laying ceremony of Ram temple”, the BJP chief said.
Importantly, the issue was raised by the BJP back in August also. In reply, the state government had pointed out that while Eid was a religious festival, the Ram temple foundation stone laying ceremony was nothing but the programme of a political party.
Undeterred by the cash dole of Rs 50,000 each to community Durga pujas and the monthly allowance for Hindu priests announced by her, the BJP has continued to project Mamata as someone who panders to the sentiments of the Muslim community at the cost of the Hindus.
Nadda, however, did not confine himself to only playing up the religious sentiments of members of the Hindu community.
With pandemic gradually tapering off in the country and vaccine for COVID-19 not a distant dream any more, BJP has decided that it is time to claim credit for management of the crisis by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Nadda, on Wednesday, lauded Modi for handling the COVID crisis well.
He said while many developed countries with advanced health infrastructure suffered great losses owing to COVID-19, timely lockdown announced by Modi had ensured that the situation did not go out of control in India.
The whole world appreciated the handling of the challenge by Modi, Nadda said and added that financial packages announced by the central government in this connection had benefitted crores of poor people.
Later, Nadda went to Bhawanipore, assembly constituency of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, and took part in an interaction programme there.