President Amit Shah rejected permission to hold a rally today in West Bengal, hit out at Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee saying she was terrified that the BJP was making inroads into the state. “There is an era of terror in Bengal. Mamata Banerjee is throttling democracy,” said Amit Shah.
Now rally from Cooch Behar was to be the first of three marches planned by the BJP to criss-cross the state ahead of next year’s general elections.
“We will definitely carry out all ‘yatra’, nobody can distract us,” Amit Shah said.
Yesterday, the Calcutta High Court agreed with a state government decision to disapproved permission to Amit Shah’s ‘rath yatra’ on grounds that it anticipated “communal tension”.
This morning, a division bench accepted a permission to review a single judge bench order supporting the Bengal government’s order.
The ‘rath yatra’ would have included all 42 Lok Sabha constituencies in Bengal – one of the few non-BJP states. Mr. Shah has set the party a target of 22 of the state’s 40 seats in next year’s national elections. The BJP presently has two Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal – Asansol and Darjeeling.
The other two BJP rallies are planned from Kakdwip – in the extreme southern part of the state – and Tarapith temple in Birbhum district.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi may point a rally in Kolkata after the two yatras end.