Tejasvi Surya Vs Abhishek Banerjee: BJP Wants Bengal To Compare The Two Because It's Confident Of The Result

Tejasvi Surya Vs Abhishek Banerjee: BJP Wants Bengal To Compare The Two Because It's Confident Of The ResultTejasvi Surya (L) and Abhishesk Banerjee
  • Tejasvi Surya is leading one of the four protest rallies of BJP against the Trinamool in Kolkata today.

The BJP, which has mounted a bid to unseat Mamata Banerjee from power, sprang a surprise on Wednesday (7 October) by announcing that the national head of its Yuva Morcha, Tejasvi Surya, will lead one of the four processions that will converge at ‘Nabanna’, the state secretariat that houses Banerjee’s office, in Kolkata, on Thursday (8 October).

Surya, the BJP’s youngest MP in the Lok Sabha and an accomplished speaker, is not a familiar figure in Bengal’s political landscape. And that is could work to his, and the BJP’s, advantage.

Surya, 30, is a rising star in the country’s political firmament and also a youth icon. He is a proficient lawyer and represents the Bangalore South constituency that houses major IT hubs where Bengal’s young and aspiring migrate to.

Thursday’s rally will be the Bangalore MP’s first major public engagement since his appointment as the national president of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) less than two weeks ago.

“Tejasvi will inject a massive and fresh dose of enthusiasm into our party cadres, especially the youth. His appeal cuts across all sections of society and age groups,” said BJP state president Dilip Ghosh, who is leading the party’s campaign against the Trinamool.

On his arrival at Kolkata airport Wednesday evening, Tejasvi received a rousing reception from enthusiastic BJP cadres. That enthusiastic welcome, say senior BJP leaders, is portentous.

“He is a new and fresh face. He represents and embodies everything that a youngster and a young adult aspires to be. And he strikes a chord easily with everyone,” BJYM state president Saumitra Khan told Swarajya.

Khan said that though Tejasvi hails from Karnataka, he will be positioned as a BJP youth icon who will present a stark contrast to the Trinamool’s youth icon and Mamata Banerjee’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee.

Abhishek Banerjee has no achievements to his credit and is, instead, alleged to be corrupt.

A controversy involving Abhishek’s wife broke out in March last year after customs officers at Kolkata airport allegedly recovered two kilos of gold from her luggage on her arrival from Bangkok.

Abhishek is a Lok Sabha MP and heads the Trinamool Youth Congress by virtue of being Mamata Banerjee’s nephew.

The 33-year-old Abhishek obtained an ‘unrecognised’ MBA ‘degree’ in 2009 from the controversial 'Indian Institute of Planning & Management' which had been listed as ‘fake’ by the UGC and had been accused of fraudulent practices.

“Tejasvi also represents a constituency (Bangalore south) which has many IT hubs that employ thousands of men and women from Bengal. Migrating to Bangalore is what many youngsters from Bengal dream of. In that sense, they will be able to make an immediate connection with Tejasvi,” said Khan.

Tejasvi also has other achievements to his credit: he is the founder of an NGO known for its work in the field of education, and is also trained in Carnatic music.

He is slated to lead one of the four protest rallies to Nabanna (the state secretariat) on Thursday noon. The other three simultaneous rallies, led by state BJP chief Dilip Ghosh, BJP national vice president Mukul Roy and state BJP vice president Raju Banerjee respectively, will be participated in by BJP’s Bengal minders and a host of party MPs.

But even before Tejasvi landed in Kolkata, Mamata Banerjee suddenly announced a two-day shutdown of the state secretariat. The reason: sanitising and fumigation of the entire building.

“She (Mamata Banerjee) is running scared. This is the beginning of her end,” said Tejasvi immediately after landing in Kolkata.

On Wednesday afternoon, Tejasvi released a video criticising Mamata Banerjee and her rule. That video, circulated on social media, has got lakhs of hits, likes and shares.

Jaideep Mazumdar is an associate editor at Swarajya.


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