Kolkata: Debunking the state government's charge that the BJP was trying to incite violence by conducting armed rallies in the state in the name of religious celebrations, Union Minister Uma Bharti on Friday blamed West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for "intentionally" promoting fundamentalism in the state.
"These allegations are baseless. They don't make any sense. Mamata Banerjee is intentionally doing fundamentalist politics. She is propagating the politics of hatred," the Union Minister for Water Resources told the media after conducting a mass rally in West Bengal's Howrah district.
Bharti said that rallies on the occasion of Ram Navmi and Hanuman Jayanti were part of age-old traditions of Hinduism and claimed that such rallies had happened earlier as well.
"Such rallies are a part of our age-old traditions. If the law and order situation in the region is good, police can monitor such rallies without any problems. Rallies like these were conducted earlier as well," the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said.
Bharti also asserted that the BJP would form the government in West Bengal "with a clear majority" in the next assembly polls.
"BJP will form the government in Bengal with a clear majority, just as we saw in Assam and in Haryana, where once upon a time only one or two of our MLAs used to be elected," she said on her arrival at the Howrah railway station on Friday morning.
Bharti's comments come in the wake of her party finishing second in the by-poll to Kanthi Dakshin assembly constituency in Purba Medinipur district.
Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress retained the seat with the BJP pushing the Left Front to the third position.
Banerjee has, however, accused opposition parties in Bengal of transferring votes to one another and said she was least bothered about who emerged as her party's principal opposition.
The Bengal assembly polls are scheduled to be held in 2019.