After poster war in Midnapore over Modi’s rally, TMC and BJP clash in cyber space

The TMC’s cyber offensive comes on the heels of Mamata Banerjee’s move to bolster the party’s cyber wing before the Lok Sabha polls through workshops.

india Updated: Jul 16, 2018 14:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Mamata Banerjee,Narendra Modi,Trinanmool Congress
Posters of the Trinamool Congress and BJP have erupted all over Midnapore ahead of the Prime Minister’s rally on Monday.(HT Photo)

After swamping Midnapore with posters and cut outs of chief minister Mamata Banerjee ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in the town, the Trinanmool Congress on Monday launched a cyber offensive highlighting the West Bengal government’s contribution for the farmers.

Using #BengalWithFarmers, the official Twitter handle of the TMC posted a series focusing on achievements of the Mamata Banerjee administration on the agriculture and related sectors, prompting to BJP to respond in kind.

Old age pension for farmers stands at Rs 1,000 that has benefitted 1 lakh cultivators, claimed one tweet.

“Farm implements distributed free of cost among 3.7 lakh farmers at the cost of Rs 386 crore,” said another. tweet “Enhancing crop production through quality seeds, agricultural credit & crop insurance,” read a third.

BJP responded with #BengalWithModi. “Countless people already turned up to say thanks to PM @narendramodi ji for increase in MSP price. 7 million farmers get benefit of hike in MSP of paddy,” the BJP tweeted.

The “Krishok Kolyan Somabesh” at Midnapore witnesses a huge gathering of people preparing to welcome Hon’ble PM Narendra Modi with immense love and respect,” tweeted Union minister of state for heavy industries Babul Supriyo.

The TMC’s cyber offensive comes on the heels of Mamata Banerjee’s move to bolster the party’s cyber wing before the Lok Sabha polls through workshops.

“The expenditure in the agriculture and agri-allied sector has increased more than 6 times, from Rs 3,029 crore during financial year (FY) 2010-11 to Rs 20,283 crore during FY 2017-18. As a result, among other things, the farmers’ average annual household income has increased from Rs 91,000 during FY 2010-11 to Rs 2.9 lakh during FY 2017-18,” said a report posted by the Trinamool team.

Among the major crops of Bengal are rice, wheat, potato, maize, jute, pulses, oilseeds and sugarcane.

It also claimed that rice production rose from 134 lakh tonnes in 2010-11 to 159 lakh tones in 2017-18. Production of pulses rose from 1.77 lakh tonnes to 4.4 lakh tones and that of oilseeds from 7 lakh tonnes to 11 lakh tonnes during the same period.

The TMC also claimed big success for the Soil Health Card (SHC) that is supposed to provide information to farmers on soil acidity-nutrient content and recommend steps for use of fertilisers.

On Monday morning, it was apparent both in Kharagpur and Midnapore that banners, posters and cutouts of Mamata Banerjee were far more than those of the Prime Minister, but Modi interpreted it in his own way.

“I am grateful for the posters of chief minister Mamata Banerjee all around the place welcoming us,” Modi said during his speech in Midnapore.

Bu the TMC poster blitz seemed to have riled Supriyo.

“If a film of Shah Rukh Khan is being released will Salman Khan flood the area with his posters?” Supriyo told reporters in Midnapore, and then paid a left-handed compliment to the TMC.

“We would assume that the chief minister is welcoming the Prime Minister with folded hands,” he said.

“Trinamool is afraid that the people are extending their support to us,” said BJP Bengal president Dilip Ghosh.

Last week, Trinamool general secretary Subrata Bakshi had directed party workers to flood the entire area with pictures of their leader so that Modi would her posters no matter which route he took from the Kalaikunda airbase to reach the venue in Midnapore town.

First Published: Jul 16, 2018 14:28 IST