Union Home Minister Amit Shah who has kept himself away from the dust of Bihar elections is visiting West Bengal for a two-day tour on Wednesday. Shah is likely to meet Indian classical vocalist Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty besides having lunch with a tribal and a Matua family in Bankura and Jyoti Nagar in North 24-Parganas district.
“I don’t have words to explain my happiness. When we were first told that our Union Home Minister will have lunch at my house, we thought that it was a joke. We are poor people and why someone like his stature would come to our house for lunch. But later a large number of police and commandos surveyed our area and I was told that he is actually having lunch at my house on November 6. My entire family members don’t have words to express our feelings and gratitude towards him,” Navin Biswas, a refugee resident of Jyoti Nagar told News 18.
In the context of food which would be served to the Home Minister, Biswas said, “There will be nothing special. It will be purely vegetarian food. What we eat on a daily basis, we will serve him. My wife will cook all the food items for him and we have already started preparing for it.”
A day before his Kolkata schedule – he will visit the Bankura district to have a series of interactive sessions with ‘Karyakartas’ (workers) and ‘Samajik Samuha’ (various community people).
On November 6, Shah may also visit Indian classical vocalist Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty (who was given the Padma Bhushan Award in 2020) residence in Kolkata to exchange greetings followed by a trip to Dakshineswar Kali Temple.
BJP president in Bankura, Bibekananda Patra, said, “We are eagerly waiting for Amit Shahji. He will meet our party workers and also important leaders from various tribal and nontribal communities to understand the local issues, demands, and problems. After that, he will offer prayers at the Birsa Munda statue in our locality.”
“He expressed his desire to lunch at a tribal house and we have suggested Bibhishan Mandi’s house. Bibhishan is a daily wage labourer and he is extremely happy to hear that Amit Shahji will have lunch at his house. It will be a simple lunch and it will be served on ‘Sal’ leaves,” he added.
TMC MP Saugata Roy ridiculed Shah’s West Bengal trip and said, “He is coming here to iron out differences among the party leaders and workers in Bengal ahead of the polls. Rest of his schedule is just a photo opportunity. We all know the rift in the state BJP as many leaders are against party president Dilip Ghosh.”
Eyeing nearly 35.8 percent significant Scheduled Cast (SC) and Schedule Tribe (ST) voters in Bankura alone and roughly around 40 per cent of them in the entire Jangalmahal – Union Home Minister’s ‘tailored planned’ visit to Kolkata and Bankura is considered to be crucial ahead of the polls.
Not least, since third-fourth of the Bankura is ‘Jangalmahal’ – BJP central leadership has carefully chosen Bankura for workers’ congregation and ‘Samajik Samuha’ because it will directly have a proportional political impact on entire the South Bengal including Purulia, West Midnapore, and Jhargram consists of 32 Assembly seats (out of 294).
Tribal community plays an important role in Jangalmahal and Shah will meet all the leaders of Kurmi, Santhal, Munda to note down their grievances and pending demands for more than 50 years.
Once a Maoist stronghold, Jangalmahal’s substantial vote bank of the Left Front has pushed the saffron brigade ahead of the ruling TMC in recent years. This helped the BJP to create history by securing 18 Lok Sabha seats (out of 42) in Bengal (in 2019).