Dilip Ghosh, the BJP Chief of West Bengal, is credited for the meteoric rise of the party in State politics. An RSS worker since 1984, Ghosh was tasked to lead the BJP in West Bengal in 2015. Under his tutelage, the party saw a steep rise in its membership and electoral success in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. An outspoken personality, Dilip Ghosh has been a hated figure in the Bengali leftist intellectual sphere.
Although Ghosh has stirred controversies for his politically incorrect statements, it is his outspoken nature that continues to attract members and voters to the party. The leftist intellectuals in the state found safe haven under the Trinamool Congress government, following the ouster of the CPI(M) from the power corridors. Due to similarity in ideologies of curbing free speech and dissent, they have left no stone unturned to malign the BJP Chief while remaining indifferent to the activities of the TMC.
Given that Dilip Ghosh and BJP poses a serious threat to Mamata Banerjee’s political career, they have upped their ante amidst the ongoing polls. The BJP State Chief has recently criticised the West Bengal Chief Minister of ‘orchestrating’ an accident and showcasing her supposedly ‘injured’ leg to the world. While slamming her for her theatrics, he suggested her to switch to ‘Bermuda’ instead of a saree. His comment did not go down well with leftist journalists, who played the ‘women card’ to paint him as a misogynist.
On being intimidated by a female celebrity in a condescending tone over his ‘Bermuda’ jibe, he clarified, “This might be acceptable to you not to me. I have the courage to speak truth to power… I am unanswerable to society. I will speak out on matters that are not acceptable in our society… If you feel bad about it, then, I can’t help you.” But the celebrity further prodded him in a bid to solicit an angry reaction from him. A visibly irked Dilip Ghosh responded, “Motei sadharon nagorik non apni. Jebhabe kotha bolchen. Nekami korben na apni (You are not an ordinary citizen as evident from your tone. Don’t do drama here).”
The woman then used his statement as an example to claim that he does not think before commenting. The BJP Chief snapped at her said, “Apni bolta parle ami o bolte pari. Ami ki dai niyeche naki sob bhalo kotha bolbo (If you can talk like this, then, even I can. Did I take responsibility of speaking only good things?)” He also added that he is a common man unlike her and did not resort to dramatising anything for personal or political gains.
These intellectuals have eaten the system like parasites, remarked Dilip Ghosh
In a press conference held on January 15 last year, BJP MP from West Bengal Dilip Ghosh took a dig at a few prominent Bengali intellectuals who were up-in-arms against CAA and NRC. His comment came at the backdrop of a contentious viral video wherein the said intellectuals could be seen repeating “Kagoj Amra Dekhabo Na”, which means “we will not show papers.” The video in question is the Bengali adaption of comedian Varun Grover’s Anti-CAA anthem “Hum Kaghaz Nahin Dikhayenga.”
On being asked by a journalist about his opinion on the video, he said that there existed a possibility that some of these Communist-backed intellectuals might not have papers. He labelled the cabal as “nonsensical” and “treacherous” for not understanding the importance of procuring valid identification cards as and when required. He said that the intellectuals had betrayed the nation, pocketed the country’s resources at the expense of the poor, ate up the system like “parasites”, and lacked the spine to stand for “truth,” out of loyalty to their political masters.
Lastly, Dilip Ghosh pointed out that shouting “Azadi” on the road might fetch one newspaper headlines but do not do anything good for the society at large. Ghosh also implied that such misleading narratives do not affect the party but expose their vicious agenda to the people.
Rogre debo, warns BJP Chief on intellectuals entering politics
During a recent interview with Sangbad Pratidin, Dilip Ghosh slammed the lobby of leftist intellectuals for trying to politicise key issues. At about 17 minutes into the interview, he was asked about the release of a new song titled, “Amra onno desh e jabo na ai desh e tai thakbo (We will not go anywhere but stay only in this country).”
Dilip Ghosh replied, “I have told intellectuals to sing and dance. It is their job. Don’t do politics. Leave it upon us.” He added, “Nahole rogre debo (Else I will scratch)“. On being asked what did he imply, Dilip Ghosh replied in his typical no-bars held manner, “Jane aura ami ki bhabe rograi (They know how I can scratch).”
Cannot eat beef on the roadside, cautioned Dilip Ghosh
The journalist asked the BJP Chief that intellectuals in West Bengal are fearful that their individual liberty will be compromised if BJP comes to power. He responded, “Those who make such allegations will definitely have a problem. Those who stand on the road and eat beef will definitely face problems. If you want to do so, then, do it in your kitchen. You can even consume dog or goat if you want. Why do you need to eat beef on the road?”
Furthermore, he emphasised, “Anyone who tries to look modern by disrespecting the culture and societal norms gets lost in history… Under the immunity of power, those who insulted the culture of the land will not be spared by society. I am not stopping anyone from eating anything. You have to follow the law of the land. Here (in WB), there is no restriction on the consumption of beef. But, there is a restriction on the sale and where it can be consumed. But since none is stopping you, it doesn’t mean that you can do whatever you want.”
“TMC has become Total Muslim Congress”, emphasised West Bengal BJP Chief
Dilip Ghosh had been a vocal critic of the Muslim appeasement politics of the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal. West Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh has said that Trinamool Congress has become Total Muslim Congress (TMC). Reacting to the Mamata Banerjee’s West Bengal government’s directive to build dining halls for mid-day meals in schools having 70% or more minority students, Ghosh said that TMC is a by-product of minority appeasement politics started by Congress.
Talking to India Today, Dilip Ghosh said, “TMC has become Total Muslim Congress, they do politics by dividing (people) in the name of religion for vote. Partition also had happened due to this reason.” He said that it is very wrong to bring difference in children in the name of religion, saying it is dangerous for the country. They talk about Hindu Muslim unity, but if they are separated from childhood on the basis of religion, how can it happen?
Dilip Ghosh Vs Intellectuals
Ghosh has played a major role in making BJP a household name in West Bengal. With his politically incorrect statements on Muslim appeasement, beef politics, and the parasitic role of scholars and artists, he has drawn the ire of the Bengali intellectuals. Since the departure of the Communist regime, their influence on society has tremendously reduced.
Even though they have found shelter under the Trinamool Congress dispensation, they have miserably failed to suppress the rise of BJP in the State. And when you can’t suppress them, you can only afford to hate them. Such has been the dynamics between Dilip Ghosh and the leftist intellectuals.