ALIPURDUAR: Sticking to his “secure the country’s borders” narrative, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah on Friday assured that the National Register of Citizenship (NRC) would be applied in West Bengal if the saffron party came to power. In another rally in Bihar, he asserted that only Prime Minister Narendra Modi could protect the nation.
Speaking at a rally in Alipurduar constituency of Bengal, Shah said, “We will implement the NRC in Bengal and drive out illegal immigrants. But Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist refugees need not worry...”
Pitching the electoral contest in the state as one between Modi and the Opposition’s ‘Mahagathbandhan’ (Grand Alliance), Shah exuded confidence that his party would win 23 seats in the state.
Training his guns on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for questioning the IAF air strike in Balakot and DRDO’s anti-satellite missile test, he said, “When the people of Bengal drop a missile on her head, she will get her answer... She thinks that the infiltrators would help her sail through the election. But nothing is left of her slogan ‘Ma, Mati, Manush’. Ma has no Mamata, Mati has been given to infiltrators and Manush are being slaughtered,” he added.
Remembering the violence during the panchayat polls last year, Shah claimed that 33 per cent of the voters could not exercise their franchise and 80 workers of his party were killed.
Responding to Shah’s claim of implementing the NRC, Kolkata Mayor and municipal affairs and urban development minister Firhad Hakim said: “Till Mamata Banerjee is alive in Bengal, we will not let Indian residents become non-Indians,”
During the BJP chief’s first rally in Bihar, he changed tack to attack the Opposition.
Training his guns on Congress president Rahul Gandhi directly, he said: “Rahul Baba has only one dream. To become PM by hook or by crook. He does not nurture the dream to make or see India as the world’s most powerful country.”
“The elections in 2019 are not only to elect the PM, but to make India a country of power, prosperity and peace. It would be dangerous to let the country go to the Congress, which showed its real face in the wake of the anti- terror operations,” he said.
Uddhav to attend shah’s Gujarat rally
Although the alliance between the Shiv Sena and the BJP in Maharashtra may be going through a rocky stretch, leaders of both the parties are not missing out on any opportunity to show that the saffron alliance has gelled well. Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray will be attending a grand show led by Amit Shah on Saturday in Gandhinagar, before the BJP chief files his nomination.
According to functionaries privy to developments, Shah spoke to Thackeray on Thursday night to invite him to Gandhinagar. Since 2014, the Sena has always remained particularly harsh on Shah.
He was always referred to as ‘Afzal Khan’ which has led to several bitter battles between the two parties. The NCP meanwhile took potshots at the Sena.
“Does it mean that the tiger from Maharashtra has now found a safe place in the lap of Afzalkhan?” asked NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik.