Kolkata, March 14: Why are BJP leaders suddenly making a beeline in West Bengal? After party president Rajnath Singh who visited West Bengal recently, party leader and chief ministerial candidate in Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje was scheduled to visit the state on Thursday. In April, heavyweight BJP leader and Gujarat Chief Minister is scheduled to visit the state capital.
Modi's visit to West Bengal is significant from the economic point of view no doubt. Local industrialists and business figures are looking forward to meet the chief minister, whose pro-development model has become a matter of international significance.
What is the political equation?
But what is the political equation behind the BJP leaders' successive visit to the state?
The basic thought is simple. The BJP has the maximum scope of improving in West Bengal for it has just one MP and no MLA in the state. The NDA has a poor representation in the eastern part of the country.
The crumbling of its government in Jharkhand and the not-so-good relation with Nitish Kumar in Bihar has made the BJP more apprehensive and it is focusing on West Bengal to make up for the lost ground.
According to one report, Modi, who has been informally projected as the face of the party for the next Lok Sabha polls, has also sought information from the state leadership about how th party is doing here. Modi's arrival will also act as a booster for the workers in the state, party sources believe.
Will Mamata make a compromise with BJP?
The next question that arises: Will Mamata Banerjee side with the BJP? Apparently the answer is no. But Banerjee, who has been cornered in national politics at the moment, could find a welcome opportunity to bounce back by making a compromise with the BJP. The question of 'communal' and 'secular' will evaporate in a flash.
The Congress-led UPA would try all means to destabilise her regime in West Bengal and talks are already being on about the ruling alliance trying to make a back-stage deal with the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) in the Darjeeling hills to corner Banerjee more. The BJP would also discover an enemy in the GJM if that indeed happens for the two parties had joined hands in the last parliamentary polls.
The TMC and the BJP might find them on the same side owing to common enemies in the Congress, GJM and the Left Front and it would be no surprise if indeed an alliance is worked out.
Banerjee's politics of polarisation in the West Bengal society has also encouraged the rightist forces to invest in the state. It is to be seen how Banerjee balances her populist politics with her political survival.
Mamata in NDA, Nitish in UPA?
The next question that answers a reply now is: Will Banerjee make up for Nitish Kumar's loss in the NDA? The possibility can not be ruled out either. The way the UPA and JD(U) chief minister of Bihar is sending signals to each other time again about a possible marriage and Nitish's arch-rival Lalu Prasad also wooing the UPA will silly talks, such eventuality is not baseless.
It seems the final signature on the divorce paper between the BJP and JD(U) will be put the moment Modi is officially declared to be the prime ministerial candidate of the NDA. Modi perhaps knows this well and is preparing the ground for inviting Banerjee to fill the vacuum. Reports of the increasing bonhomie between the Congress and the Left Front has also pushed the BJP towards the direction of Banerjee.
The idea of third front in Indian politics will remain an elusive one. Whatever substantial political formations develop in this country at the national stage, they have to revolve around the two main political parties. Even if none of these two parties manage to gain an advantage, whoever comes to form the government of the day will need the backing of either of them, the Congress being the leader.
The drama is getting exciting.