NEW DELHI: The BJP may have lost to Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress in the West Bengal assembly elections last May, but the party has refused to dilute its focus on the state that gave it 18 of the 42 MPs in an unprecedented show at the hustings in the 2019 parliamentary elections and established the party as the main opposition in the state.
With an eye on 2024, the BJP on Sunday vowed to “improve its vote share after the successful performance that established BJP as the main opposition party for the first time in the state” even as the party’s vote share dropped drastically from 2019 and has been losing leaders and cadre migrating to TMC since its defeat last May. In fact, party leaders attending the national executive here on Sunday admitted that the continued focus on the state is “aimed at stalling the steady outflow” from the party to the ruling TMC.
In his opening address at the executive meeting on Sunday, party chief J P Nadda highlighted the “attacks on its party workers by TMC in Bengal” since the elections got over and said that “the party will stand with every worker in the state”.
On BJP’s growth in Bengal, Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan quoted Nadda as saying, “if one looks at its growth in the state from the political science perspective, then there will be very few parallels of it in Indian political history,” referring to the unprecedented rise of the saffron party in a state where it barely existed.
Nadda said that if one looks at the BJP’s vote share in the 2014 assembly elections and the 2016 assembly elections in West Bengal, and compares them with the 2019 Lok Sabha polls and 2021 assembly polls, it shows substantial growth for BJP in the state, according to Pradhan who briefed the media after the party chief’s address.
In his address, Nadda accused the TMC of unleashing violence against BJP workers and warned the ruling TMC in Bengal that “BJP will not sit quietly and will fight a decisive and democratic battle in the state to ensure that lotus (party’s symbol) blooms in the state.”
Nadda mentioned that “142 assembly seats witnessed violence, 53 people were killed, there were 7,000 plus cases registered, 123 cases of sexual assault took place and almost 90,000 people had to flee their homes because of which the party is running 93 home shelters for its workers in the states,” to substantiate on his accusation of post-poll violence on party’s people by the ruling TMC.
Devoting a whole section to the political violence in Bengal in the party’s political resolution passed at the party’s executive on Sunday, BJP executive members paid their tribute to those party workers who lost their lives to violence in Bengal and vowed to ensure punishment for the culprits.
Nadda inducted the highest number of national executive committee members from Bengal for the first time, during the last organisational reshuffle a couple of months back.


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