Politics

One defeat after another, increasing popularity of Mamta, the work of strengthening the BJP in Bengal on new faces

Following the disastrous assembly election in West Bengal, the BJP’s state unit unveiled a new list of 72 committee members on Wednesday, which includes morcha presidents, incharges, and co-incharges of several departments within the party.

Sukanta Majumdar’s replacement as West Bengal BJP president, Dilip Ghosh, necessitated an organisational shift. A substantial number of party officials, MPs, and workers were defecting to the ruling TMC, putting the party’s leadership on the defensive.

To keep the fort in West Bengal afloat in the face of TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee’s soaring popularity, BJP national president JP Nadda has tasked six MPs and ten MLAs with strengthening the party across the state.

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The introduction of two new MLAs as general secretaries and six new MLAs as secretaries is the most major organisational change on the list. This is likely the first time the state BJP has delegated such a large amount of power to newcomers.
Dipak Barman, a Falakata MLA from Alipurduar, is one of the two new MLAs to be named general secretary. Burman was a surprise choice because he had never held a party position before, and the party has sought to depict him as North Bengal’s Rajbanshi face.

modi-mamata
modi-mamata

Agnimitra Paul, an ace fashion designer and Asansol South MLA, was also appointed as general secretary. She was the Mahila Morcha’s president. Tanuja Chakraborty has been named the next Mahila Morcha president by the party.

Siliguri MLA Shankar Ghosh, Old Malda MLA Gopal Saha, Murshidabad MLA Gauri Shankar Ghosh, Pursura (Hooghly district) MLA Biman Ghosh, West Durgapur MLA Lakshman Chandra Ghorui, and Moyna (East Midnapore) MLA Ashoke Bhimchandra Dinda are the six new MLAs appointed to the post of secretary

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Arjun Singh, Jagannath Sarkar, Khagen Murmu, Saumitra Khan, Locket Chatterjee, and Jyotirmoy Singh Mahato are among the six MPs chosen by Nadda to boost the party’s cadre in Bengal.
The elevation of MP Saumitra Khan from yuva president to state vice-president is another notable shift. Dr. Indranil Khan has been named the next yuva morcha president by the party.

The BJP chose Jewel Murmu (Habibpur MLA in Nadia district) to lead the ST morcha as president, based on the Jangalmahal/scheduled tribal vote share (which went to the TMC in the assembly elections). MP Khagen Murmu was once the president of the ST morcha, but he was promoted to vice-president.

All seats under Jangalmahal, including Purulia, Midnapore, Bishnupur in Bankura, and Jhargram, were won by the BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. However, the TMC won the tribal/matua vote share in the recent assembly election, prompting the BJP to make an organisational reform by keeping key MPs and MLAs from the ST and Matua communities in the new state committee list (Jagannath Sarkar is now a vice-president).

Sayantan Basu, a long-serving member of the BJP, was unexpectedly demoted to the position of general secretary, while his colleague Anindya Banerjee, better known as Raju Banerjee, was promoted to vice-president.

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