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Business News/ Politics / Policy/  Amit Shah kicks off BJP’s campaign for 2019 general election from Naxalbari
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Amit Shah kicks off BJP’s campaign for 2019 general election from Naxalbari

While launching the campaign for 2019 general election from Naxalbari, Amit Shah said there is no alternative to the BJP if West Bengal people want development

Amit Shah claimed that development was reaching all parts of the country, but the TMC government was not allowing it to happen in West Bengal. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFPPremium
Amit Shah claimed that development was reaching all parts of the country, but the TMC government was not allowing it to happen in West Bengal. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP

Kolkata: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah on Tuesday kicked off the campaign for the 2019 general election from Naxalbari—the symbolic epicentre of a movement 50 years ago which transformed West Bengal’s politics forever.

Shah, who is on a three-day tour of West Bengal, is expected to announce some defections from the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Wednesday.

Kanak Debnath, a former general secretary of the Congress, who switched to the Trinamool Congress last year, said he would formally announce joining the BJP on Wednesday, along with at least two others.

“I am confident that lotuses will bloom in West Bengal as well," Shah said in Naxalbari, emerging from the home of local BJP leader, Sadhana Mondal, who is the lone representative of the party in the local panchayat.

Also read: Sukma Naxal attack— ‘Will retaliate in equal measure’, says Rajnath Singh

Chief minister Mamata Banerjee who is currently travelling in north Bengal attacked the BJP in a public rally on Tuesday, saying that the BJP was using Hinduism to divide the nation. The BJP, she said, was threatening to spread unrest across the country.

Shah hit back, saying the Trinamool Congress’s rule was worse than that of the Left Front, which was in power in the state for 34 years till 2011. There is no alternative to the BJP if West Bengal’s people want to benefit from the Centre’s pursuits of development, Shah added.

During his tour of West Bengal, Shah will visit party workers in their homes in a bid to shore up strength at the grassroots level, said BJP leaders in Kolkata, asking not to be identified. Termed ‘booth chalo’, the exercise is aimed at expanding the party’s support base, they added.

On Wednesday, Shah will be visiting a party worker in Kolkata in the neighbourhood of the chief minister’s home before calling on “key influencers", where at least three Trinamool Congress leaders will join the BJP, they added.

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Published: 25 Apr 2017, 07:16 PM IST
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