Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Suvendu Adhikari on Wednesday fired a fresh salvo and challenged West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee ahead of the upcoming state assembly election.
Speaking in Hooghly, Adhikari told news agency ANI that he takes the responsibility of "ensuring the victory of whoever contests from Nandigram on BJP ticket". West Bengal CM Banerjee sprang a surprise on January 18 when she declared that she will contest the assembly election from Nandigram, the seat held by him before he switched over to the BJP.
"I take the responsibility of ensuring the victory of whoever contests from Nandigram on BJP ticket. Didi (Mamata Banerjee) has announced to contest from there, relying on 62,000 votes but I have 2.13 lakh people who chant 'Jai Shri Ram'," said Adhikari. He also said, "At a rally, TMC state president Subrata Bakshi said -- 'Jai Shri Ram nahi chalega'. In the election, people of Nandigram will give a befitting reply to those who coin such slogans."
On Tuesday, Adhikari had said the TMC is like a private limited company run by two people, referring to Banerjee and her nephew Abhishek. "Didi, you have to contest from only one seat, Nandigram. You cannot fight from two seats, that is not going to happen," he asserted.
Nandigram was the scene of massive public protest against "forcible" land acquisition by the erstwhile Left Front government for the creation of a special economic zone. During another public meeting, Adhikari had said he will defeat Banerjee her by a margin of "at least 50,000 votes" if fielded from Nandigram.
Adhikari also alleged that many BJP workers were attacked by the TMC earlier in the day. "There have been attacks in five places. The police was busy ensuring a smooth passage for the CM's convoy for her rally at Purulia in the afternoon," he claimed. The political heavyweight from Bengal also said while Banerjee specialises in telling lies, her nephew is an "extortionist". "Her (Mamata's) days are numbered as the chief minister. She should be ready with a letterhead that reads former CM," Adhikari said.