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Mamata using statue politics to save bastion from BJP
TIWN
Mamata using statue politics to save bastion from BJP
PHOTO : TIWN

Kolkata, July 18 (TIWN) The Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has gone on a statue-building spree, starting with the reinstatement of the vandalised bust of 19th-century reformer Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar a month ago. Statues of other Bengali icons will be erected at some of the other educational institutions in Kolkata.

Banerjee''s party colleagues say this is her attempt to claim the legacy of Bengali icons and position herself at the vanguard of Bengali culture. They claim this is being done to counter the rise of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the state after it put up a stupendous performance by winning 18 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats.  By erecting statues of prominent Bengali figures from the field of academics, art and poetry like Rabindranath Tagore, Vidyasagar and Ashutosh Mukherjee, she is trying to ensure she does not cede even a single inch of mindspace among the intellectuals and Bengali bhadralok - the quintessential Bengali - who played an important role in the ousting of the Left front and propelling her to the chair of Chief Minister.  "We have already spoken to the vice-chancellors and principals of universities and colleges. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is keen to set up statues of the Bengali icons from different fields at these institutions," said state education minister Partha Chatterjee.  Any shift in political power in West Bengal is preceded by territory domination with the emerging force breaking into bastions like the transport union, teachers'' union and students'' union.

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