KOLKATA: BJP president Amit Shah Sunday took a jibe at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Sunday, and stopped his speech mid-way following azan (Islamic call to prayer) from a nearby mosque.
"Let us stop. We don't want to give Mamata any excuse," Shah said, halting his speech for nearly five minutes after the azan was sounded.
With many supporters shouting slogans during the azan, Shah raised his hands signalling them to stop, and reiterated: "Please let us not give Mamata any excuse."
The Bharatiya Janata Party chief was addressing a rally, permission for which was given by the Banerjee administration only Saturday.
The city police, West Bengal Fire Department and the Kolkata Municipal Corporation had denied permission for the event at the Victoria House, where the ruling Trinamool Congress usually organises its annual martyrs' day rally.
An intervention by the Calcutta High Court saw the BJP getting the nod only at the eleventh hour.
Sounding the battle cry for the 2015 municipal polls and the 2016 assembly elections, Shah unleashed an all-round attack on Banerjee and her party and declared he was in the state to "uproot" the Trinamool from Bengal.
"BJP has been celebrating Nov 30 as 'Uththan Diwas' (Day of Rising). But from next year, we will be celebrating the day as the day of Trinamool's demise," Shah said, asserting that the countdown for Trinamool's departure had begun.
Calling for a change in favour of the BJP, Shah urged people to begin Trinamool's end from the municipal polls.
On the occasion, singer-turned-politician and Union Minister of State for Urban Development Babul Supriyo also ridiculed Banerjee, and gave a call for uprooting the Trinamool.
The rally was attended by a host of BJP leaders, including parliamentarians S.S. Ahluwalia, Chandan Mitra, the lone party legislator in Bengal, Samik Bhattacharya, and the party's state unit president Rahul Sinha among others.