With the preparations for Lok Sabha 2019 elections heating up, both West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee and BJP have locked horns over the latter's rally in the state. The BJP has not received a permission for its 42-day rath yatra in West Bengal.
With the BJP ready to carry a rath yatra ahead of Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee has called the rally 'divisive' and has been accused by the party of withholding permission. Yesterday at a public gathering TMC chief said, "BJP does divisive politics. They are talking of Rath Yatra. These raths have all five-star luxuries. The BJP are show-off. Earlier they used to seek votes in the name of Ram, she said.
BJP says she has not responded to their application to hold the rally leading the party deciding to approach the courts. Following this, Dilip Ghosh has declared his party will knock the doors of High Court if the state does not give permission.
The rally is of significance to the party in power. Amit Shah will flag-off the rally and PM Narendra Modi is expected to deliver a speech in Kolkata.
This is not the first time that the BJP claimed it faced issues when trying to hold a rally in TMC chief's state. In August 2018, the controversy about BJP's rally in West Bengal had erupted, with the party claiming it was denied the permission and the Kolkata police saying it never received an application.
Mamata Banerjee too will be holding a rally in January 2019 in order to bring together all Opposition parties against the BJP for the Lok Sabha polls.
"In the current political situation faced by the nation, it is essential for all of us to strengthen the federal structure, democratic institutions, Constitutional proprieties and to maintain the secular fabric of the country. The meeting assumes great importance for all the opposition political parties to stand together against the BJP," she said.
The leader has been quite for months about her move with regards to giving support for the rally. Her position may become clearer after her meeting with Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu on December 19, 2018.
Naidu who had been in talks with leaders for the anti-BJP alliance had said that her support will be of importance as 'she is a strong leader'.