Referring to Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee’s defeat in Nandigram during the April-May assembly elections and her September 30 bypoll in Bhabanipur, newly appointed West Bengal BJP president Dr Sukanta Majumdar termed his party “the tiger that has tasted blood", and pledged to put up a stiff challenge before the chief minister.
The Bharatiya Janata Party has fielded lawyer Priyanka Tibrewal against Mamata, who has to get elected to the state assembly within six months of taking charge as chief minister on May 5.
During a felicitation programme on Tuesday at the BJP office in Hastings area of Kolkata, Majumdar said, “We got the taste of defeating her (Mamata Banerjee) in Nandigram. I would like to commend our leader Suvendu Adhikari for giving an excellent fight in Nandigram. Now, we have a bypoll in Bhabanipur. It’s like any other seat but one thing is different: the chief minister herself is contesting from this seat. We got a good taste in Nandigram and once again we will try our best to get the same taste. The tiger that has once tasted blood is never sated.”
On September 20, BJP national president Jagat Prakash Nadda appointed first-time Lok Sabha lawmaker Majumdar as the West Bengal party unit chief. Majumdar was elected to Parliament in 2019 from the Balurghat constituency in South Dinajpur district. He defeated Trinamool MP Arpita Ghosh by a margin of 33,293 votes. Majumdar has a PhD in Botany from the University of North Bengal.
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“The real asset of the state BJP is our party workers. I am ready to face the challenges ahead in Bengal where lawlessness is a major concern. My priority will be to strengthen the booths and to stand beside my booth/party workers. We will reach out to our party workers whom we could not meet during the post-poll violence. We will apologise to them and will do everything that will be required to boost the morale of the party workers,” he said.
Majumdar said he is confident that the party will win more seats in Bengal in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls than it did in 2019. The BJP had picked up 18 of the state’s 42 constituencies in the previous general elections, a massive jump from the 2 it won in 2014.
Expressing concern over the “deteriorating law and order situation" in the state, he said, “There is Taliban rule in Bengal. The TMC is like the Taliban and our fight will be against the ‘Talibanisation’ of the state. The BJP is here to liberate Bengal from this Taliban rule.”
Majumdar has taken over the reins of the BJP Bengal unit at a time when several of its leaders, including former union minister Babul Supriyo recently, have been switching to the TMC that won the assembly elections decisively.
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“I don’t want to comment on those who left," he said. “All I can say is that it will not have any significant impact on the party because those who are connected with the party ideologically are still there and they are not going anywhere despite having some differences. It is a big party and mistakes may happen and we will rectify them. Party workers are the real asset and we will continue to keep them close. We will emerge victorious one day."
Majumdar has replaced Dilip Ghosh, who’s renowned for a string of controversial comments. “Once he said that there are traces of gold in cow milk. It was mentioned in one of the international journals on science," said Majumdar. “His statement was not reported correctly. We all know there are foods that contain a lot of iron and this does not mean that we will make rods out of it. It is all about how you look at things."
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