The West Bengal BJP observer Kailash Vijayvargiya said that several leaders from TMC, Congress and CPI-M will join BJP on 30 January where Union home minister Amit Shah will address a public meeting of the Matua community.

Shah will address a Matua congregation in Thakurnagar where community leaders expect him to elaborate on ‘time frame’ of CAA implementation. He is expected to be on a two-day visit to Bengal, and on his second day will visit the bastion of gaudiya vishnava community at Mayapur.

For the next two weeks, Thakurnagar will see major public shows by the BJP vying for crucial Matua votes who came to the state as refugees during Partition. Besides being electorally significant, the Matuas have also been part of the state’s politics over the years which currently has a BJP camp and a TMC camp.

The BJP camp, which makes up for a significant part of the community, has a primary demand – citizenship. Matuas make up close to 2 crore or 20 per cent of Bengal’s population and are spread over five districts – North 24 Pargana, Nadia, Howrah and Dinajpur (North and South). In at least 30 constituencies of North 24 Pargana, Nadia and some parts of Howrah in south Bengal, Matuas constitute over 40-50 per cent of the population.