Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday emphasised unity as a countermeasure against potential division, which the BJP would encourage to make electoral gains.
The Trinamul Congress chief was delivering a speech over the phone at a programme held by the party’s minority sell to commemorate the demolition of Babri Masjid.
Minister Aroop Biswas was on the dais at the event titled Sanhati Divas (Integration Day).
In her address, Mamata cautioned against falling for provocations and urged the minority community to stand united for the sake of ousting the BJP from power at the Centre next year.
“If you are divided, the BJP benefits. Today is the day to take an oath to be united,” she said.
Analysing the election results from three Hindi heartland states, the chief minister asserted that fragmentation of anti-BJP votes had benefited the saffron camp. She stressed the need for voting en masse for the most suitable candidates — suggesting those of her party, in Bengal’s 42 Lok Sabha seats — to defeat the BJP.
According to Mamata, the fight against the divisive politics of the BJP was not merely for power but also for the protection of the people, their fundamental rights and basic civil liberties.
“The BJP is trying to divide the country. If we stay united, then it will become very easy to defeat the BJP. So, in this situation, it is very important to stay united. They are trying to divide you in the name of religion. You should not indulge in rumours and false propaganda,” she said. “Trust us. Keep faith in us. The Trinamul Congress will defeat the BJP.”
Taking a veiled swipe at the Indian Secular Front, Mamata urged the minority community to avoid a split of votes.
She also stressed the importance of respecting religious places, while cautioning against their names being misused. In a clear reference to the ongoing political dynamics, she conveyed her disapproval of divisive politics and called on people to refrain from participating in it.
In the 2021 Assembly polls, Muslim votes consolidated with the Trinamul Congress, enabling it to secure 120 of 141 seats with a significant presence of members of the community.