BJP’s opposition to WB bypolls aimed at ousting Mamata

BJP’s opposition to West Bengal bypolls aimed at making Mamata Banerjee resign as CM

BJP's opposition to elections is indicative of their aim to oust Mamata Banerjee as CM of West Bengal

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. Credit: PTI Photo

The West Bengal BJP is doggedly opposing the Assembly by-elections in the state and wants them to be delayed. Although the state BJP leadership is citing the Covid-19 pandemic and the possibility of a third wave as the reasons behind their objection to the bypolls in seven Assembly seats, the real reason seems to be that they are keen on making Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo resign as Chief Minister for being unable to get elected within six months of taking oath.

Mamata who lost to BJP’s Suvendu Adhikari from the Nandigram Assembly seat in the last Assembly election will have to resign if she fails to get elected to the Assembly within November 5. The state BJP seems to be keen on ensuring that bypolls get delayed and she will have to resign suffering a political embarrassment.

The state BJP leadership also wants to delay the bypolls to prevent further loss of face as it has very little chances of winning more than one out of the seven seats. They seem to be well aware that Mamata will most likely win from Bhavanipur Assembly seats and with the exception of Shantipur in Nadia district the TMC will bag the rest of the seats. BJP insiders said that out of the seven seats it is only in Shantippur the party’s organization is strong enough to take on the TMC.

Also read: BJP MLA joins TMC in Bengal

State BJP president Dilip Ghosh’s repeated assertion that Assembly bypolls should only be held after the TMC government conducts polls in 122 municipalities in Bengal is apparently a pressure tactic to delay the bypolls.

However, the TMC despite being hopeful that the Election Commission (EC) will hold the bypolls by November 5, the party has a backup plan in case it does not happen. TMC sources said that the party wants to play the sympathy card in case Mamata has to resign and raise its anti-Centre rhetoric.

Speaking to DH, political observer and author Snigdhendu Bhattacharya said:  “BJP is opposing the bypolls because it wants to make Mamata face the embarrassment of resigning as the Chief Minister for being unable to get elected in due time. But even if she fails to get elected by November 5, the public sympathy will be with her.”

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