In the run-up to the high-octane West Bengal polls, the BJP and the TMC have now entered into a poster-war with the saffron party taking a dig at Mamata Banerjee's popular 'Pishi' reference.
Releasing a poster ahead of the elections, BJP's new dig at the TMC Supremo read, 'Bengal wants its own daughter, not Pishi', featuring 8 prominent female leaders from BJP Bengal. It is important to note that 'Pishi' in Bengali means 'paternal aunt'. Urging Bengalis to vote for their daughters instead, BJP featured Rupa Ganguly, Deboshree Chaudhary, Locket Chatterjee, Bharti Ghosh, Agnimitra Paul, among others on its poster.
বাংলা তার মেয়েকেই চায়, পিসিকে নয়! pic.twitter.com/rDFYzgLZTK— BJP Bengal (@BJP4Bengal) February 27, 2021
Previously as well, the BJP has attacked the TMC supremo over her infamous 'Pishi' title. While addressing a rally, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had taken a jibe at Mamata Banerjee remarking that Bengal did not need a 'Pishi -Bhaipo' government.
Bhaipo in Bengali means nephew, the phrase, a clever sneer at Mamata's nephew Abhishek Banerjee. Notably, Abhishek Banerjee had been at the centre of controversy surrounding the TMC exodus with several of its former leaders alleging that the party was moving towards 'dynastic politics'. The term was popularised by former TMC heavyweight Suvendu Adhikari who while joining the BJP alongside 23 other grassroots leaders asked people to shun Mamata's nephew with a slogan, 'Bhaipo Hatao'.
The saffron party has also released several other slogans with Mamata Banerjee at the center of the remarks such as-- 'Pishi Jao' and 'Bangla Didir Theke Mukti Chay' - meaning "Bengalis want to get rid of Didi".
Mamata on the other hand is backing her 'daughter of the soil' image urging people to not allow 'outsiders' to take control of West Bengal. Bolstering her 'outsider vs insider' remarks, TMC's pre-poll slogan is -- "Bangla Nijer Meyekei Chay" - Bengal wants its own daughter.
তাঁর জীবন ন্যায় প্রতিষ্ঠায় আপোসহীন সংগ্রামের প্রতিমূর্তি।— All India Trinamool Congress (@AITCofficial) February 20, 2021
তাঁর মানবতা মন ছুঁয়েছে বাংলার প্রতিটি মানুষের।
তাঁর সারল্য ও বন্ধুতা তাঁকে করে তুলেছে বাড়ির মেয়ে।
তাঁর নেতৃত্বে বাংলা এগিয়েছে প্রগতির পথে।
তাই সোচ্চারে বলছেন সবাই - #BanglaNijerMeyekeiChay! pic.twitter.com/Ev8L9N3Nox
Countering Mamata's 'daughter politics', BJP's Mahila Morcha President Aginimitra Paul and National Secretary Vijaya Rahatkar questioned the lack of action by the Mamata government to protect the rights of women in the state.
Citing the rise in cases of trafficking and rape they said, "Bengal is number one in trafficking, number two in rapes and third in child marriages. Are these women not daughters of Bengal? Are these ladies who are been harassed by Trinamool goons, not daughters of Bengal? Now, Hitler Didi is remembering daughters in the run-up to elections?"
In the run-up to the vigorously contested polls, the BJP has gone all-guns-blazing, dispatching its top brass including PM Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP President JP Nadda to the state to campaign for the upcoming elections. Raking up issues of political violence and corruption, the saffron party has asked Bengal to bring an end to the 'dictatorship' of Mamata Banerjee and once again establish a 'Sonar Bangla'. The TMC, on the other hand, has hit out at the BJP vowing to never allow 'outsiders' to take control of Bengal, slamming the saffron party for its 'divisive politics'.
Elections to the 294 seats in West Bengal will be held in 8 phases across 1,01,916 polling stations from March 27 to April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.