On a day when two Trinamool Congress MLAs, one from the CPM and more than 50 councellors from West Bengal joined the BJP, party’s general secretary and West Bengal in-charge Kailash Vijayvargiya on Tuesday took a swipe at the Mamata Banerjee-led party, saying "it is just the first phase", and more leaders will come into the BJP's fold "in seven phases just as the elections were held in seven phases".
Buoyed by major gains in Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal, Vijayvargiya said the BJP is aiming for more than two-third majority in the assembly elections due in 2021 and is even prepared for early polls in the state.
In the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls, the BJP won 18 out of 42 seats in West Bengal, which was a multi-fold increase from its tally of only two seats in 2014 elections. The party's vote share also zoomed to 40.25 per cent in 2019 from 16.8 per cent in 2014. It has only three MLAs in the 294-member Assembly.
Attributing the party's success in Lok Sabha polls to BJP's organisational strength, Vijayvargiya said he along with other leaders has been working for the last four years on the ground to expand the party's foot print across the state.
"We were confident of party's splendid performance in the Lok Sabha polls due to the BJP's expansion in the state, rise in its organisational strength and faith in the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi," he said.
The party, which has been crediting success of its election management to its cadres especially those working as booth agents, has employed similar strategy to make inroads in West Bengal.
At present, the BJP has presence on 70 per cent booths, and in next year or so it will have presence on all the booths across the state, Vijayvargiya said.
On the party's prospects in assembly polls in the state, he said: "The BJP will definitely form government in the state in 2021 polls and is aiming for 221 seats in the 294-member West Bengal assembly. Youth and development-oriented people have moved away from both Mamata and the Left."
Asked about whether Mamata Banerjee-led government will complete its term, Vijayvargiya said the BJP will not do anything to destabilise it.
"It may fall on its own due her (Banerjee's) dictatorial attitude. We are prepared for early polls," he said.
Asserting that the BJP is seen as the most democratic political outfit in the state, he said it is the reason why political workers of various parties are attracted to it.
Various leaders from West Bengal mainly belonging to the TMC joined the BJP in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls. "This will continue and more leaders from West Bengal will join the BJP," he said.
Vijayvargiya and former TMC leader Mukul Roy are among the leaders who are considered to have played a key role in making the BJP a potent force in West Bengal. It has emerged as the main challenger to the ruling Trinamool Congress in the just concluded Lok Sabha polls.
Mamata Banerjee's TMC, which had won 35 of 42 seats in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, managed to get only 22 this time.
(With PTI inputs)