Kolkata: Bengal’s soon-to-be three-time Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who pulled off a stupendous victory yesterday in face of an all-out fight by the BJP, today declared that the party, which rules at the Centre, is “not shahenshah” (emperor) and the people of Bengal have put them in their place.
“The people have stopped the ruination… the spine is straight,” added the Chief Minister, who ahead of the election had repeatedly told people that the BJP will use money power to buy their votes. “Take their money but vote as you please,” she had declared in rally after rally.
Yesterday, the 63-year-old — who had to battle the entire might of the BJP complete with huge funds and a battery of star campaigners — had termed her hard-fought victory a “victory of democracy”.
“Bengal has saved India. This is a victory of democracy. They said they would win 200-plus seats but they have been decimated. Bengal has decimated BJP’s ego,” Mamata Banerjee had said.
The results in Bengal have come as a shock for the BJP, which had invested its best efforts this time to bring the state under its control.
In a short, angry Facebook post, party MP Babul Supriyo — who contested from Kolkata — said Bengal’s voters have made a “historic mistake”.
“Neither will I congratulate Mamata Banerjee… nor do I wish to say I ‘respect’ the people’s verdict… sincerely think people of Bengal made a historic mistake by not giving BJP a chance… by electing this corrupt, incapable, dishonest government and a cruel lady back to power,” read his Facebook post, which he deleted later.
PM Modi — who along with Union minister Amit Shah had held 50 rallies in the state — sent his congratulatory tweets late last evening, long after his cabinet ministers Rajnath Singh and Nirmala Sitharaman.
Ms Banerjee today pointed out that he had not called her. “This is the first time a prime minister did not call,” she said.