If Trinamul Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee tried to woo Bengal with her painting skills, chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee did with a song.
On the day of poila baishakh (Bengali new year), the chief minister joined the singers during a road show at his Assembly constituency-Jadavpur.
“Aguner parashmoni chhoyao prane (light my soul with thy holy flame)”, Mr Bhattacharjee sang. With the chief minister, singing Rabindra Sangeet, and his arch rival, wooing the voters with her colours, Bengal elections “could have been an exemplary one”, observed a CPI(M) functionary. “But behind the singing and painting lurks the threat of an unprecedented violence. Bengal is tensed and security forces are on full alert,” a Bengal government official said in a telephonic conversation.
However, if Ms Banerjee’s paintings were lapped up by the corporates, Mr Bhattacharjee’s song mesmerised the local audience, who had come to hear the chief minister ranting against the Trinamul Congress. It may be recalled that 10 years back, when Mr Bhattacharjee led the Left Front campaign as its chief ministerial candidate, he was a different man altogether. His stern, dictatorial attitude was not there. It was Buddha, who could be your next-door “bhadralok”.
With the CPI(M)-led Left Front, on the verge of losing its 34-year-old grip on Bengal, Mr Bhattacharjee is once again trying to turn on his charms to woo the electorates. But Tagore has been the flavour of the election season for the reds and the Trinamul Congress. Ms Banerjee pouted Tagore during her Railway Budget speech, on January 26. The railway ministry brought out a tableau, a replica of a railway coach used by Tagore for his travels between Santiniketan and Kolkata.
But the “creative” Ms Banerjee, however, is trying to be a step ahead of her rivals. She not only put up an exhibition of her paintings, but also recites her own poems to the crowd at her elections rallies. Asian Age