Jayanta Naskar, two-term TMC MLA from Gosaba, West Bengal has got life size statues and one bust of his own built for himself.
- Suman Bhattacharyya
Trinamool Congress party leaders, like their supremo Mamata Banerjee, seem to be obsessed with the idea of finding their place in history. They would go to any ludicrous extent, write meaningless poems (trying to pass them as ‘nonsense rhymes’), paint naïve pictures and sing themselves hoarse in an attempt to be recognized as a genius, for posterity. The latest in this trend is Jayanta Naskar, two-term MLA from Gosaba, West Bengal.
Naskar, who has been attacked by miscreants twice in the recent past, cannot trust his family members or party men to continue his legacy after he is gone. He is not sure if they would remember him at all after he is gone. Despite his security being increased during the last three years taking into account his threat perception, Naskar continues to live in this perpetual fear of death.
As a consequence to these, he has got life size statues and one bust of his own built for himself. He spends a good deal of time every morning washing these three statues at his Bagulakhali home in Chunakhali in South 24 Parganas district.
One may feel pity for the 71 year old politician who is guarded by 11 policemen and his state of mind, but one can also place it in a recent frame of political reference. We are naturally reminded of Mayawati and how she installed her statues all over the state of Uttar Pradesh. The trend has been extended to West Bengal with huge cutouts of the Trinamool Supremo and her nephew, displayed on any occasion in the state of West Bengal, religious and cultural.
Naskar has no hesitation in saying that he has no confidence in his relatives and colleagues. His constituency, Gosaba, is infamous for political violence.
The history of political clashes in Gosaba can be traced to the time of the left front. However, with the change of regime, it has only accelerated. Chittaranjan Naskar, the elder brother of Jayanta Naskar, had been a Congress leader. He was defeated by the CPI (M) in the 1977 Assembly elections. After the death of Chittaranjan Naskar in 1987, Jayanta inherited his political legacy. He had lost thrice in the assembly elections consecutively, contesting on a Congress (1996) and Trinamool (2001 and 2006) nominations. He had finally been able to win in 2011 and 2016. Jayanta Naskar had travelled frequently to Kumartuli (Kolkata) from his Bangla Khali home to pose for the sculptor. He takes pride in meticulously describing the process in which first a clay statue, and consequently, the three fiber statues were made.
Jayanta Naskar is definitely a farsighted man who has caused the labour of getting their father’s statue installed for his five children after his death. But the inspiration, here, too, evidently came from the Chief Minister of West Bengal herself.