Spokesperson of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Tripura Pradesh, Prasenjit Chakraborty is a great admirer of the people of Bangladesh. Being a senior journalist, who has worked with several leading media houses in Tripura Pradesh, Prasenjit Chakraborty joined active politics. Politics needs patriotic and honest individual who only can make a difference. Being a dedicated member of BJP, Prasenjit has been always maintaining closer communication with the people and encouraging everyone in actively contributing in leading India towards further prosperity and peace. Recently Prasenjit Chakraborty has accorded an exclusive interview to Sohail Choudhury, executive editor of Blitz. Here are the excerpts:
Blitz: You are a journalist turned politician and holding an important post in Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Will you tell us the key reason which has turned rather a regional party like BJP into one of the strongest political forces in India?
Prasenjit: First I should tell you that BJP is the largest party in the world with more than 11 crore [110 million] members. The main reason, I think, behind BJP emerging as the strongest political force in India is its ideology and principles.
BJP believes in the ideal of integral humanism that connects everyone together. The slogan,“Sabka Saath Sabka Vikash” derived out of its basic ideological base. People of India, in the course of time, have realized and understood the depth of this inclusive ideology and came forward to strengthen this party to make a difference.
Blitz: Media critics say, “Modi magic” that gave BJP a landslide victory in 2014 has “vanished”. What will you say about this?
Prasenjit: I would not use the term “Modi Magic”, rather, I would say, credibility of Mr. Narendra Modi ji has increased many times in last four and half years of period. People have witnessed a corruption free, completely dedicated and transparent government under the bold, dynamic and patriotic leadership of Narendrabhai Modi ji. His era has already proved to be an era of massive development. India has emerged as one of the strongest economies in the world. Even his stern critics accept that popularity of Modi ji has increased and none is nearby to challenge his special place is the hearts of the peoples of India.
I think Modi ji is the most trusted global leader of present times.
Blitz: During the recent regional polls, BJP faced setbacks against its arch rival, Indian National Congress (INC) and its political allies. But all of us know – INC is a party of family dynasty. In this case, do you think, the people of the largest democracy in the world are being inclined towards politics of family dynasty?
Prasenjit: People of India have come out of suffocating condition created by dynastic politics and have no desire to re-enter into that trap. One or two defeats in small margin in states does not mean people lost faith on central government. State assembly elections are held based on local issues. Still in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan the difference of seats between BJP and Congress is very poor. You can’t say Congress got huge mandate. Besides, I should also remind you that Congress lost power in Mizoram in the North East and was rejected by the people of Telengana.
Blitz: Are you seeing BJP winning the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, or it would be INC returning to power?
Prasenjit: There is no doubt regarding BJP coming back to power under the leadership of Narendrabhai Modi ji. Total seats of the party would be further increased.
Blitz: in Assam, there is reaction centering registration of Bangla-speaking Muslims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made pledges during his 2014 election campaign about expelling the “illegal Muslim migrants” from India. Do you think, BJP in Agartala also is supportive of this plan?
Prasenjit: Not only BJP or India alone. I think, all the responsible parties in the world and all the governments accountable to their legitimate citizens must be against illegal infiltration into their respective territories. BJP is never an anti Muslim organization and has no agenda against any linguistic or religious community. It opposes illegal infiltration. I am sure – no other country will happily welcome me if I enter its territory without legal means.
Blitz: In Bangladesh, ruling Awami League, under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina won landslide victory during December 30 general election. Bangladesh has emerged as one of the fastest growing economies in the world. How will you assess this victory of Awami League and the leadership qualities of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina?
Prasenjit: Sheikh Hasina ji belongs to the family of a great leader, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who successfully and courageously led a dreaded war of liberation. She herself is also a widely respected personality.
Election in Bangladesh’s National Parliament and the way people of Bangladesh have rewarded Sheikh Hasina ji and her party with a landslide victory, it has greatly inspired me and many of the leaders in India. Her re-election as the Prime Minister for the third consecutive term evidently proves – she has been leading Bangladesh in the right direction. It would not be wrong if I say, Sheikh Hasina ji is a living legend, an iconic statesman and a great inspiration to all the women in this sub-continent and the world. The existing cordial relations between India and Bangladesh as well as excellent interaction between Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina ji would definitely contribute in further strengthening relationship between the two friendly neighbors.
Please remember, Sheikh Hasina ji is the leader of the people of Bangladesh and a magnanimous symbol of courage, determination, patriotism and excellence to all the Bangalis in the world. All of us have witnessed with greatest surprise the way she has been very successfully able in pulling a struggling economy in Bangladesh into the status of one of the fastest growing economies in the world. I think leaders in the developing and under-developed nations have a lot to learn from Sheikh Hasina ji for transforming their own nations into nations of infinite possibility.
Blitz: Do you see a further deepening of the existing relations between Bangladesh and India in the years to come?
Prasenjit: Absolutely. All of us know, Sheikh Hasina ji is the most trusted and tested friend and ally of the people of India. Her foreign policy seems to be – friendship with all and enmity with none. With such an excellent foreign policy, Sheikh Hasina ji certainly will contribute in further deepening the existing relations between India and Bangladesh.
Blitz: Pakistan and its intelligence agency as well as anti-liberation forces in Bangladesh are continuously conspiring against Sheikh Hasina and her government. Do you see this as a hurdle for the Bangladeshi Prime Minister?
Prasenjit: Absolutely not. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina ji enjoys support of the people of Bangladesh. So, any conspiracy against her will surely be confronted by the people of the country. Some may want an economically weak and chaotic Bangladesh. With such ulterior agenda, if anyone conspires against Sheikh Hasina ji and her government, at the end of the day, those conspirators will be defeated. Sheikh Hasina ji will remain ever victorious.
Blitz: January 19 is the day when in 1990, there was a massacre on Hindu pundits in Kashmir. After so many years, there really is no sign of rescuing Kashmir from militancy and it is widely known, these militants enjoy patronization from Pakistan. Considering these realities, do you think, Kashmir is an unending headache for India?
Prasenjit: Jammu & Kashmir is an integral part of India and I foresee the day coming closer when militancy would be totally eliminated and uprooted from there.
Blitz: You are from Agartala, which has historic bondage and emotional attachment with the people of Bangladesh. In your opinion, how this bondage can be further strengthened?
Prasenjit: Not only as a resident of Tripura but also as an Indian, we have emotional attachment with Bangladesh. We have similarity in every sphere of life. It’s our common responsibility to take this relation to further height. More exchanges from the field of culture to commerce are essential. Governments of both the countries have been working hard in this regard. People-to-people contacts also getting strengthened every day. The message of love and brotherhood should be spread in the both sides of the border.
We are the nearest neighbor to each other, so we need to keep faith on each other. Here I can say – every Indian wants to see Bangladesh as a prosperous nation. We want to see the people of Bangladesh to be happy.
Blitz: You have relations with Blitz and its editor Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury for past 16 years. You are aware of Mr. Choudhury’s firm determination in combating radical Islam and jihad and promoting interfaith harmony. But, he has suffered a lot for his ideology and has even served rigorous imprisonment for many years. Being a fellow journalist, what is your opinion about the repression on Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury and how you will judge his contributions in confronting religious hatred and promoting interfaith harmony?
Prasenjit: During my quite a long period as a journalist before joining active politics I came in contact with Mr. Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury who I think is a jewel in the field of global journalism. He has always stood with the oppressed enduring pain in his own life. Despite repressions he did not give up his ideology and his aim to serving the humanity. I must say, civilized society should guarantee the protection of such bold soldiers ever vigilant against radicalism of any kind proactive to promote interfaith harmony. There should not be threat to absolute freedom of speech and freedom of expression guaranteed to Mr. Choudhury by the state machinery and other stake holders. It gives me immense pleasure that I have been associated with Blitz and this newspaper of distinctive difference is edited and published by one of the leading journalists in the Indian subcontinent.