Bharatiya Janata Party national president JP Nadda’s West Bengal trip this week has given a much-needed boost to the cadres, said state unit chief Sukanta Majumdar. In an exclusive interview with News18, he spoke on the upshot of the visit, the issue of infighting in Bengal BJP, and plans to take on the Trinamool Congress moving forward. Edited excerpts:
What is the takeaway from JP Nadda’s West Bengal visit?
Naddaji’s margdarshan (guidance) is priceless for us. More than 1,000 mandals got the opportunity to listen to him. The speech of our national president really pumped new life into all of us. All district workers were enthusiastic after his speech. It is priceless. They will take this forward up to the booth level, I am sure.
What was the focus of his speech? What target did he give?
He spoke about various things. He emphasised the success of the Modi government over the last eight years. He emphasised on Bengal and said there is nothing to fear from the TMC. He referred to the Bihar case. He said there was a common saying, ‘Jab tak rahega samose mein alu, tab tak rahega Bihar mein Lalu.’ ‘See, now Lalu is not there,’ Naddaji said. ‘Samose mein alu hai, and Lalu is in Jail.’ Nadda ji said he is confident that like Lalu was thrown out of power in Bihar, similarly the TMC will also be thrown out of Bengal. Moreover, Naddaji also said that Mamata and her nephew will face the same consequences as Lalu.
What was his message to the people who are leaving the BJP?
He said nothing on this. The BJP is a party where leaders are not important, the symbol is important. Nadda ji gave his own example and said that he is held in high esteem because he is the national president of the largest party in the world. Who is coming and who is going does not make any difference for the BJP, that’s my take.
There were workers who asked him why the CBI is not finishing its job? He replied that it’s their work and a controversy started on this…What’s your take?
He has not commented on the CBI aspect as all the CBI inquiry that is taking place now is due to courts. We can’t accelerate or do anything to the CBI. So he answered in the right way. The fact that he has said Mamata and her nephew will face justice is because he has faith in our investigation and Constitution.
There is a huge problem of factionalism in the BJP even after JP Nadda came. Dilip Ghosh had to be called by his office. What was his message on the faction fight?
See, it’s a team, and we will go with that. We, the trio, Dilip Ghosh, Suvendu Adhikari, and I, have a good understanding. He has not said anything about that. It’s not a thing to be discussed in front of everybody. Everyone was together in all the programmes.
State BJP leaders from north Bengal have said they want a division. What did he say on that?
Actually, he said you yourself can’t say something that the party has not said. Whatever the party decides, that’s final. When the party seems to have taken the decision that we think Bengal should not be divided, then why are others saying this individually, that was Naddaji’s question. He has asked everyone strictly to stop this. On the other hand, my take is that we cannot deny north Bengal has not got anything. They have their sentiments. Political representatives have to raise people’s issues; that’s what they are doing. They have to speak on behalf of their people. But the party’s stand is that we want a united Bengal, following Syama Prasad Mukherjee.
What was the prescription that he offered?
To build the organisation. Every leader from myself to booth-level workers has to give 100 per cent. We need people at the booth level. We have to work hard.
Has he told you to ask people whether they are getting benefits from central schemes or not?
Yes. Here, the state government uses all central programmes with local names. He has asked us that through the booth-empowerment committees, we will go to every house and find out what scheme benefits they are getting. Through this, we will reach the people.
‘Kal hamara hai’, is what he said. How do you see that?
Very soon, we will form the government. I am really enthusiastic about that. I will convey his messages to the lower levels. The situation between the state government and the ruling party is not right. See what happened yesterday, even after the chief minister’s appeal; protesters were on the roads (over remarks by suspended BJP leaders on Prophet Muhammad). The CM has surrendered to fringe elements. So tomorrow is definitely ours.