Bengal: In the minority-dominated Jangipur Lok Sabha seat in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district, Mafuza Khatoon will perhaps be the first Muslim lady candidate for the Bharatiya Janata Party who will take on former President Pranab Mukherjee’s son Abhijit Mukherjee.
In 2017, Khatoon, 47, had joined BJP after leaving the Communist Party of India (Marxist). According to the sources, it was her fiery speeches during the panchayat polls that caught the attention of Sangh Parivar, and the RSS.
Over the past two years, she became a symbol for BJP’s Muslim outreach in Murshidabad and Malda. Speaking to the Economic Times over the phone, she stated that “I have been working for BJP for the past two years and have been respected by all in the party. I am inspired by Prime Minister Modi Ji; he never said that he would only work for the Hindus and not Muslims. This campaign of calling the BJP a communal party is a ploy by the Opposition to malign us.”
She further added that “The party has given me responsibility and I would take my party’s work and policies to the people. My party has Muslim ministers at the Centre, Muslim governors and many Muslim MPs in both houses of Parliament like any other political party. Some stray gau Raksha incidents do not make my party communal.”