Ridiculing West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee and her Trinamool Congress over corruption, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday batted for development, terming it the solution to all problems.
Addressing successive poll rallies in the state, Modi described the Banerjee regime as a “dark night” and slammed it for political violence in the state.
“In 2011, when Didi (Banerjee) came to power, everybody hoped she will bring a new dawn, driving away the 34 years of darkness under the Left Front. But instead of a new sun, people of Bengal were given nights darker than those under the Left,” he said at a rally in Basirhat in North 24 Parganas district.
Charging the successive Congress, Left Front and the Trinamool regimes with “destroying Bengal”, Modi said it was Bengal’s political culture to “play politics over development”.
“We sent money for the East West Metro corridor, but the state government created roadblocks. Similar is the story of many central schemes where we sent money but the state government keeps on creating roadblocks. Unlike the BJP, it is the political culture of Bengal to play politics over development,” Modi said at a public meet in Howrah.
“When polls are held in others states, the news is of how peaceful the elections have been. But in Bengal, the only news that comes is of violence, how many people were killed, how many people were beaten, booth capturing and all. The violence in the Bengal polls is an indication that Didi has accepted defeat,” he said.
The prime minister’s remark came on a day when the third phase of the assembly polls involving 62 seats spread across four districts, were marred by incidents of violence including a Marxist agent killed in alleged poll-related attack in Domkal in Murshidabad district.
Modi also took a jibe at Banerjee’s call for “parivartan” (change) during the 2011 assembly polls.
“There was a time when Didi would crusade against corruption, always ready to fight against it. But Mamata, who came to power calling for change, has herself changed.
“The Vivekananda flyover, the Saradha scam and the Narada tapes are all glaring examples of corruption but she says nothing,” said Modi referring to the flyover collapse in Kolkata which killed 26 people and the multi-crore-rupee Saradha scam.
He also mocked the Trinamool over the Narada tapes -- a sting operation in which many Trinamool leaders including its parliamentarians and state legislators were purportedly caught taking bribe.
He spoke about his three-point agenda -- development, fast-paced development and all-round development -- and said development was the only answer to all the problems faced by the people.