Elections in West Bengal, Teesta Waters and Relations With India
West Bengal assembly elections were held in eight phases. This is a record. This election runs from the end of March to the month of April. At the end of the count, the results were announced on 2 May. Putting an end to all speculations, Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress party won a landslide victory in the 294-seat assembly with 213 seats.
BJP got 6 seats. The Left Congress alliance has been completely wiped out, they have not won a single seat. A small incident happened in the election. Mamata lost the Nandi village seat by a narrow margin to her one-time disciple, defector Shuvendu Adhikari. That, of course, is not creating any obstacle in his chief ministership.
According to the Indian Constitution, he will be sworn in as Chief Minister if the Trinamool members elect him as a leader in the Legislative Assembly (there is no question of not doing so). Only in the next 90 days will he have to win a by-election in one of the seats.
Although not a huge seat, the grassroots will get a simple majority, this is what most people expected. However, the way the ginger was consumed by the BJP’s top leadership, some people thought that something could go wrong.
In particular, the BJP has committed electoral misdeeds like scattering money, dividing people from the party, etc., like other states in West Bengal. Led by the BJP, so there is a bit of frustration not being able to win. Especially after the capture of Assam and Tripura in the last elections and the unexpected good results in West Bengal in the Lok Sabha elections, the party’s expectations increased.
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In my opinion, the BJP’s achievements in the just-concluded West Bengal Assembly elections are no less. They won a total of three seats in the 2016 election, this time their number of seats is 6, the vote is about forty percent. The BJP is now the only opposition party on a solid footing in West Bengal, five years ago. On their way to this position, they have completely wiped out the traditional Left Front and the Congress in the state.
They have also been able to attract a large section of Hindu voters in West Bengal. On this basis, they can only dream of forming a government in the future.
Mamata has clearly said that she will not give Teesta water to Bangladesh. What has the BJP said if they come to power in West Bengal will sign the Teesta agreement? But they did not say that.
Although everyone is interested in the elections in West Bengal, the main focus of interest is Teesta. Apparently due to the objections of Mamata Banerjee, it was not possible to finalize the Teesta treaty which was almost settled. According to some, if the BJP had won in West Bengal, the chances of a Teesta water deal would have increased. I do not completely agree with this.
We have to understand that the problem of water in the river Teesta is not at all, the problem is the politics of voting for water. No matter which party comes to power in the state, this politics will not end easily. If the BJP had won half the seats and come to power in the state, they would have supported the Teesta deal, not handed over the weapon of voting to Mamata. Now it remains to be seen whether anything can be done to please Mamata Banerjee. However, the agreement will be between Delhi and Dhaka, so if we have any pressure to play, we have to play with Delhi.
How will Bangladesh see the election results of West Bengal? What is the relief, discomfort, hope, despair? There has been no change of power in West Bengal or anywhere in the center, so no major change in relations is expected. However, only one party that did not play communal cards remained in power in the state.
After Assam, Tripura, it may be a bit of a relief. The threat posed by the BJP leadership to civilian life in West Bengal after Assam may also be somewhat stifled. However, in my opinion, the extreme misery of the Left-Congress alliance in the election is a thunder signal.
The BJP is a policy-based party, no matter how divisive and anti-progressive it may be, while the Trinamool is person-centered. In the long run, it remains a matter of concern whether there will be any force in West Bengal to stop the BJP from advancing in the absence of the individual.