Mamata Banerjee's government in Bengal will not complete its full term till 2021, a BJP leader predicts after the national election, in which his party has registered significant gains at the cost of the state's ruling Trinamool Congress. BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha says that assembly elections in Bengal may be held "within six months or one year".
Bengal was an important contributor to the BJP's landslide victory in the national election. The ruling party scooped 18 of Bengal's 42 Lok Sabha seats, up from just two in 2014, and the Trinamool dropped from 34 to 22.
The BJP is already planning for the 2021 assembly polls, having increased its vote share from nearly 17 per cent to over 40 per cent.
"I think Vidhan Sabha (assembly) elections will be held within 6 months to 1 year in West Bengal. The current government will not be able to continue till 2021. There is lot of dissatisfaction in the Trinamool Congress (TMC). The TMC government is being run by police and CID (Criminal Investigation Department) pressure," said Rahul Sinha.
On Tuesday, two Trinamool Congress legislators and more than 60 councillors joined the BJP, with the party's Kailash Vijayvargiya claiming more would follow in a "seven-phase joining programme".
In a "factcheck" tweet, the Trinamool said a suspended lawmaker of Trinamool and only six councilors of the party had joined the BJP. The rest, it said, were from the Congress and CPM.
Mr Vijayvargiya also said his "best wishes" were with Mamata Banerjee so that she remained Chief Minister till 2021. "But if her 'karma' and people work like this, we cannot help," the BJP leader remarked.
The Trinamool Congress, devastated by the turn of events, admits to a "minor crisis" in the party but says it will bounce back in 2021.
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