West Bengal heads for assembly polls in less than two to three months, and the TMC’s electoral fortunes have received yet another smack on the face due to Mamata Banerjee throwing a big tantrum at Victoria Memorial of Saturday upon hearing ‘Jai Shree Ram’ slogans. For the past several months, the TMC, particularly under the aegis of famous number cruncher Prashant Kishor has been meticulously working to carve a pro-Hindu image for itself. Yet, Kishor has not been able to eradicate the tremendous hatred which Mamata Banerjee harbours for the chant of ‘Jai Shri Ram’.
With Mamata’s fit of raging temper against praises for Shri Ram, months of TMC’s hard work to placate Hindus goes down the drain. In fact, Nusrat Jahan – the TMC’s ‘Hindu bride’ of sorts has also tweeted against chants of ‘Jai Shree Ram’ being raised at Victoria Memorial during the commemoration of Netaji’s 125th birth anniversary. With this, lies of Nusrat Jahan being pro-Hindu or a culturally-rooted politician from the TMC stand exposed – as the Lok Sabha MP proves to be yet another stooge of Mamata Banerjee.
The TMC is doing itself no favours by pretending to be a pro-Hindu, or rather religiously neutral party. While Mamata Banerjee’s video where she is seen incanting an Islamic chant has now gone viral on social media, the same person cannot stand Shri Ram being praised or remembered in her presence. What does that tell us about the TMC supremo and her party? That they never had, nor will in the future have the best interests of Hindus at heart. Unfortunately for the TMC, the state’s Hindus know this fact, and are all ready to vote it out of power.
This, despite the fact that Banerjee has been making concerted efforts to superficially project herself as a pro-Hindu leader. During last year’s Durga Puja festivities, the Mamata administration had argued before the Calcutta High Court that Puja pandals should not be declared out of bounds for visitors. Then, the Mamata government had increased funding to Puja committees from Rs. 25,000 to a sharp Rs. 50,000, another move which the Court also expressed its reservations against.
As for Nusrat Jahan, the TMC has been projecting her as the face of the party’s Hindu outreach agenda, in order to convince Hindus that it respects them, and in fact has a Muslim woman married to a Hindu practising her culture actively and being proud of it. She became the perfect ‘Hindu Bride’, donning the attire and presenting herself as a pro-Hindu politician, participating in every Hindu festival and engaging in other optics. However, Nusrat’s tweet in defence of Mamata Banerjee’s Victoria Memorial tantrums has lain bare her hypocrisy and destroyed the secular persona she had built so far.
The TMC’s concerted efforts over the past several months to distance from the narrative of it being a purely minority-appeasing party has fallen flat on its face. At the end of it all, Mamata Banerjee has truly single-handedly proven that Hindus must be ready to face her wrath if they do so much as chant religious slogans at a time and place of their choosing.