Sparks fly as Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee launches no-holds-barred attack on BJP
Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) at a public rally on Wednesday, sustaining the no-holds-barred public acrimony between the two parties ahead of crucial assembly elections.
Banerjee’s primary target was PM Modi who on Monday addressed a public rally from the same venue as Banerjee did in Hooghly district on Wednesday.
“Did you see what happened to US President Trump (former president)? He (Modi) wanted to make Trump victorious,” she said in an apparent reference to Modi’s “ab ki baar, Trump sarkar” comment at an event in the US during his 2019 visit. “His (Modi’s) condition will be worse than Trump’s,” said Banerjee, attacking Modi with words such as “daangabaz” (rioter) and monster. To be sure, she did clarify that she respected the prime minister’s office.
The BJP hit back, saying Banerjee was breaking all boundaries of public discourse and tarnishing the culture of Bengal.
“The language she is using is not the state’s culture. Bengal is known for decency in political discourse. But she has stooped to such low that the people are feeling ashamed. She has destroyed the culture and heritage of Bengal,” said Jay Prakash Majumdar, vice president of the BJP’s state unit.
The rally came a day after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) questioned the chief minister’s nephew and TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee’s wife Rujira Banerjee in Kolkata in connection with a multi-crore coal smuggling case. The chief minister visited the house of Abhishek minutes before the CBI team arrived. On Monday, the central agency questioned Abhishek’s sister-in-law in connection with the same case.
Acrimony between the TMC and the BJP has risen ahead of the Bengal assembly election, in which the latter is making a determined bid for power.
“Such is their audacity that they are branding mothers and daughters coal smugglers. The coal smugglers are in their (BJP leaders’) pockets and they stay in hotels owned by coal smugglers. Think where they (BJP) are hitting. They are entering our house and accusing a housewife aged only 22-23 years of being a coal smuggler,” Banerjee said.
Banerjee also alleged that female BJP workers were not safe in the party. “Women in BJP are not safe. Don’t send your daughters to BJP. Many are keeping quiet as they can’t say anything.
What do you think? I don’t know anything? I know everything. The only difference is that you can use filthy words but I can’t as I have a boundary,” the chief minister said.
“During TMC’s regime, from Kamduni to Kakdwip, atrocities are continuing against women. The CM prefers to look away. She tries to fix the price of victims and protect the accused, saying that they are young children who did some naughty things. All combined, she has destroyed the social fabric of Bengal,” said Majumdar.
Stating that she would play the role of a goalkeeper in the upcoming assembly polls, Banerjee asserted that the BJP “will not be able to score a single goal”. All shots will fly above the goal post, she added.
“TMC is such a party that if you bury me here (in a district in West Bengal), I would emerge in Delhi from the soil. An injured tiger is far more dangerous than a healthy tiger,” she added.
Prime Minister Modi on Monday called for ashol paribartan (real transformation) in West Bengal, where assembly elections are due in the next two months, mounting a scathing attack on the TMC.