Home minister Amit Shah arrived in West Bengal on Thursday on a two-day trip after the 2021 state assembly elections in which Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) won massively, bagging 213 seats out of 294.
Shah will participate in events including the foundation stone laying event of Maitri Museum and Prahari Sammelan at BOP Haridaspur.
West Bengal BJP president Sukanta Majumdar had said yesterday that Shah will arrive in Kolkata in the morning, and visit a BSF camp in North 24 Parganas. On Friday, he will visit the India-Bangladesh border area of Teen Bigha, where he is scheduled to interact with BSF personnel. The Union minister, after attending a programme at Victoria Memorial Hall in Kolkata later on Friday, will hold a meeting with office-bearers at the state BJP headquarters.
“In Siliguri, Amit Shah Ji will garland the statues of legendary Gorkha mountaineer Tenzing Norgay and Rajbanshi leader from Cooch Behar Thakur Panchanan Barma. He will address a public meeting. Later in the evening, he will leave for Darjeeling,” a senior state BJP leader said.
“He will arrive in Kolkata the next day, hold meetings with the state leadership, and look into various issues the state unit is facing,” the BJP leader added. In Kolkata, the top leader is set to attend an event to celebrate the inscription of ‘Durga Puja’ on the Unesco list of intangible cultural heritage.
Shah will be addressing a rally at the New Jalpaiguri railway sports ground. The TMC had recently made a clean sweep in the civic elections, winning 102 of 108 municipalities, giving boost to the party in North Bengal where the BJP had won most seats in the 2019 parliamentary polls.
In South Bengal, the Matuas have been demanding implementation of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), and are expected to raise their concerns with Shah.
The BJP Bengal had encountered defections after its defeat in the bypolls in Ballygunge assembly seat and Asansol Lok Sabha constituency on April 16. Both the seats were won by TMC’s Babul Supriyo and actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha.
With the defeat in Asansol, the BJP’s Lok Sabha tally in West Bengal has reduced from 18 to 17.
West Bengal BJP leaders have also demanded that general secretary (organisation) Amitava Chakraborty be replaced, a Hindustan Times report said.