Team GoaChronicle got in touch with Rakhi Mitra, the State Secretary of Mahila Morcha, BJP, West Bengal. She is doing a commendable job of calling out her own party’s leaders for the cowardice they have shown by not standing by the side of their poor karyakartas when it is most required. She let us know, “On 4th May, I received a call from Magrahat in the afternoon at around 12.00-12.30 PM. The caller was a BJP candidate who lost there. He told me that in the last round of counting, there were three EVMs which were left for counting and the TMC people and their counting agents along with the presiding officer told him that as he was already losing the elections, the EVMs which were left would not be considered anymore. He told me that he was told to finish off the formalities and leave and was told that there was no need to count the votes of the last three EVMs. It was then that I promised him that I will raise my voice because even the very last vote has to be counted. That was the day I started speaking on recounting”.
She carried on, “And then many people started calling me up to ask for recounting because in many areas, as far as we know, we have lost even with a petty margin of 300- 800 votes. If we do a recounting of all the 92 seats where we lost with a margin of votes less than 5000, we know that we will emerge victoriously.”
Mitra also apprised us about the fact that another pertinent aspect is the CCTV footage in charge of the locker rooms where the EVMs were kept. She informed us that through one of her credible sources (she requested us that the name should not be revealed) she was informed that TMC leaders had gone to one of the locker rooms early in the morning on the day of counting, along with the DM, and the government official who was the in charge, opened the room and had then changed the EVMs.
The BJP Mahila Morcha State Secretary went on, “As a politician, I am of the belief that anyone can be bought if you spend money and TMC has spent a lot of money. Even the Central Forces were supposed to be present at the counting booths but they weren’t. TMC has tried every trick in the book”. Next, she expressed her anger and grief in the wake of the horrendous violence being carried out by the TMC goons in West Bengal, “I am receiving calls round the clock and I am noting every detail down. There is a place called Haroa, there, a girl who is a BJP karyakarta was forced to remove her clothes, she was stripped naked. She was forced to do so by keeping a gun in her temple region. Then, she was asked to stretch her hands, the TMC goons then spat on her hand and she was asked to lick it. As far as I know, 3-4 girls have already been raped”.
“20-23 women have already fled their homes out of Hingalganj, including the Mahila Morcha Mandal President. All of them were threatened to be raped. TMC goons are knocking at women’s doors and telling them, “Bikele aashchi, khela hobe, rape korbo” (We are coming in the evening, the game will be played, and we will rape you). These are the words they are uttering. “Rape korbo” has become a common phrase here. In Hingalganj itself, 100-150 boys have escaped out of their homes. Imagine when the men are not at home, what is the condition of the women in Bengal. There is a place called Bawali in Budge Budge where 6 girls were forced to become naked, the goons had played the song ‘khela hobe’ and the girls were asked to dance in front of them. In Canning West, a 14-year-old girl was standing in front of her mud house; 14-15 TMC goons ripped her clothes apart with a blade and touched her whole body inappropriately, and made a video of it. The goons told her that they were saving the video for their enjoyment”, Mitra divulged shocking details about the ground reality.
Telling us about more of abominable deeds of the TMC goons, she continued, “In Kolkata Port 3, Ward no.133, the Mahila Morcha President there, has escaped the area because the TMC goons had gone to her house and said that they were searching for her because they wanted to rape her. She has fled to her mom’s place.
At Ward no. 134, Banerjee Bagan, Kolkata Port 3, TMC goons, led by Anwar Khan, vandalized the party office of a TMC fellow, who was a Hindu and told him to call his wife up as she was young and beautiful and that they would have liked to have fun with her.
At Jadavpur, our BJP candidate’s house was vandalized and looted. At Ward no.109 at Jadavpur, a mother and her daughter were forced to remove their clothes, petrol was poured on their body and then the TMC guys stood there and said, “Wow! Body ta to besh chok chok korche” (Wow! The body is quite shiny). This was done under the leadership of Javed Khan, the man who won from Kasba.
In Metiabruz, the fisherwomen were told by the TMC goons that if they were to continue selling their catch in the market, they would have to please their bosses at night. At Sonarpur Uttar, the losing candidate from BJP, Ranjan Baidya, is sitting at home, is scared, and has switched off his phone. In his area, 20-25 houses have been vandalized and looted and women have also been molested”.
Talking about Mamata Banerjee’s deliberate oblivion, she stated, “Mamata has never stood by any woman. Recall the Park Street Rape case which was the first case she had to face the moment she came into power, in 2011. She had said that the woman was raped because she was having problems with her customers. Her MP, Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar had said that the victim had disagreements with her customers, therefore, she was raped and that it was a ‘chhotto ghotna’ (small incident). The rapist was Kader Khan and his friends. He was the ex-boyfriend of Nusrat Jahan, the TMC MP. He had escaped to Mumbai with the help of Arup Biswas, TMC MLA, Tollygunge. This is Mamata’s history”.
Talking about the elections, Mitra said, “Mamata has given the Bangladeshi immigrants everything from the Aadhar to the voter card. They are her vote bank. TMC has wreaked havoc in places like Sitalkuchi and Nanoor. Even I had been threatened. On 4th May, a group of 30 men and women were out to search for my house and had successfully identified it. On Republic Bharat, Monojit Mandal, TMC Spokesperson had openly threatened me just because of a misunderstanding on his part. On National Television, he dared to say, “Aapko nahi chhodenge” (We won’t let you escape).”
Talking about the lackadaisical attitude of her party leaders, she stated, “I do not accept the Central Ministry to rush to West Bengal. The duty lies with the State Leadership. I am questioning them. Where are the leaders? Where are the candidates who have won and lost? Where are the 18 MPs who had won in 2019? Why are they not standing beside the karyakartas? Babul Supriyo tweeted that if he goes on the ground, TMC will vandalize his car. Is this the kind of leader we had asked for ‘shonar Bangla’(golden and prosperous Bengal)? If we want a change, we want a leader who can stand by us in our difficult times. I cannot leave my house because I have been threatened. The candidates had taken an oath of working for their people. Where is the essence of the oath now? Why are the karyakartas forced to call me? I do not even have ample resources to protect them. They lie with the State leaders. Doing dharnas inside offices won’t help. Why don’t they organize a dharna outside the TMC office at Nabanno? Let Mamata Banerjee arrest and beat all of us. Let the world know what she is doing. President’s rule was needed. But I do not know when they are going to do it. How many deaths more before that happens? Innumerable families have fled to Assam. There was a time when Assamese people used to chase Bengalis away and today, Himanta Da is taking us in as refugees.”
“Our karyakartas don’t use twitter. I need a statement from Amit Shah Ji, my Home Minister, and my Prime Minister. Where is the assurance of them being with us? If each BJP karyakarta is coerced to join TMC, there will be no BJP Bengal left. Not a single BJP candidate will be found. TMC will ensure that not a single candidate from BJP is seen during the Corporation Elections. Elections come and go but the leaders can’t ditch their karyakartas. It is the karyakarta who makes you a leader; you are nobody without them. These leaders have forgotten this fact. This behaviour from BJP leaders was not expected. The karyakartas have broken and are shattered. Modi Ji and Amit Ji had come to Bengal over 40 times in the last two months. Couldn’t Amit Shah Ji come for a day and meet with Mamata and ask her to stop this nuisance? That would have been enough for us. But, he didn’t utter a single word. Nobody cares about files you ask for. Where are you? TMC knows the Centre won’t do anything. BJP is not beside its karyakartas. I am sorry.”
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