KOLKATA: The exodus from the Trinamool Congress to the BJP, a trickle which is likely to turn into a torrent in the coming days, has triggered a strong resentment stemming from a sense of neglect among the ground level leaders and workers of the saffron camp.
Nearly 100 municipal councillors and many panchayat members have already switched sides to the BJP. The political migration might not go down well with the saffron party’s loyal cadres, said many of the BJP’s workers who have been with the party for long.
The continuous flow of Trinamool satraps joining the BJP after the Lok Sabha polls would trigger an internal conflict before the municipal elections scheduled to be held next year, said a BJP’s district level leader in Birbhum.
“Trinamool’s power hungry elected representatives who defected to the BJP will demand tickets from their old seats. We have been working for the BJP for over a decade when the party was battling to gain grounds in Bengal. Many of us will want to contest in the coming elections. But the way they are being welcomed by our leaders in Kolkata and Delhi, we suspect how our demand will be treated,” said the leader.
Nirmal Dam, BJP chief of North Dinajpur district, has conveyed a message to Trinamool’s elected representatives in the district that they could join the saffron party if they resigned from their posts.
“We have been receiving proposals from leaders and elected representatives from the Trinamool to join the BJP. But we have made it clear that if any elected representative who won on Trinamool ticket wants to join our party, he or she will resign from his or her post,” he said.
Anger over induction
There was discontent among BJP workers in Birbhum after the BJP inducted Trinamool MLA from Labhpur Manirul Islam. “Ashamed” and “bad decisions” were the words local leaders posted on social networking sites. They recalled that Islam had in 2015 threatened to behead a Congress functionary from Birbhum and had “squashed” three people under his feet for comm-itting atrocities against women.