A first Information Report has been lodged against 11 BJP MLAs on Thursday at Hare Street police station (PS) on charges of allegedly disrespecting the national anthem within the Assembly campus.
In a bid to strengthen the saffron party’s Dalit vote bank in West Bengal and especially to woo the Matua community people, BJP’s former national president and Union home minister Amit Shah is making a trip to the state on 30 January.
It has been learnt from a senior BJP leader that Mr Shah will address a huge gathering at Thakurnagor under Bongaon Parliamentary constituency, which is dominated by the Matua community and he is expected to address the crucial issue of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) during the meeting.
Which way the large Matua community swings will be vital to determine the fate of political parties in several Assembly constituencies.
Bongaon BJP MP and leader of the Matua Mahasangha, Shantanu Thakur has already expressed his displeasure as the BJP is vacillating on the issue of the CAA ahead of the crucial West Bengal assembly polls.
Senior leaders like BJP’s national general secretary and the West Bengal observer Kailash Vijayvargiya and party’s national vice president Mukul Roy however have been assuring Mr Thakur that the Centre is committed to giving citizenship to the refugees who make up a large section of the Matua community.
Subodh Biswas, the president of another Matua organisation, Nikhil Bharat Bengali Samanaya Samity, said that a large number of Matua community people and other Dalits are concerned with their Citizenship rights and they are eagerly waiting to hear Shah’s address at Thakurnagar.
“We want the CAA and an end to the harassment of Matuas in West Bengal and other states. We would lend our support to whichever particular political party will really do something for us. Else our organisation will intensify movement across India over this issue,” said Subodh Biswas.
The BJP in its bid to secure a win in the state Assembly poll has launched several programmes to preach against the alleged misrule of the Trinamul Congress.
Mukul Roy has squarely blamed chief minister Mamata Banerjee for opposing citizenship of the Matua community. The Matuas, originally hailing from East Pakistan (present-day Bangladesh), started migrating to West Bengal in the 1950s, mostly due to religious persecution.
In the Lok Sabha polls, the community, under the leadership of BJP MP from Bongaon, Shantanu Thakur, voted en masse for BJP due to the CAA. However, the absence of Mr Thakur from BJP rallies in his area and even during Amit Shah’s and JP Nadda’s recent visit to the state has raised eyebrows.