President of India’s ruling Bharat Janata Party (BJP), Amit Shah, has claimed that they had plans to expand the BJP’s power-base overseas to “Sri Lanka and Nepal”.
The Chief Minister of Tripura, Biplab Kumar Deb, said that Amit Shah had expressed his plans at a tea party with the State leadership during a trip to Tripura. Amit Shah had said that he planned to expand the BJP overseas to India and Nepal after winning most of the states in India.
“We have to expand the party in Sri Lanka, Nepal and win there and form a government”, said Amit Shah, according to Deb.
Deb said it was only under Shah’s leadership that the BJP could become the world’s largest party. “The communist[sic] had claimed that their party was the largest in the world, which Amit Shah broke by making BJP the largest party in the world,” Deb is reported as having said.
The Indian opposition parties reacted to these claims.
The leader of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Jitendra Chaudhry, said that the Tripura Chief Minister’s statements regarding the conversation he had allegedly had with Shah implied that “they are interfering in the affairs of the foreign country”.
“BJP must answer this and Prime Minister Narendra Modi should also speak out on this issue”, he said.
Some took issue against Chief Minister Deb. The Indian Congress’ Vice President Tapas Dey called for action to be taken against the Chief Minister.
BJP figures, such as Subramaniam Swamy, had claimed that Shah had been joking and did not actually support dominating Nepal or Sri Lanka.