Mamata likens PM to Tughlaq
Sharpening her attack against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, chief minister Mamata Banerjee today likened him to the 14th century Delhi king Sultan Muhammed Bin Tughlaq, known for his whimsical ways.
"I have seen many governments at the Centre, but never seen a Tughlaqi government like this. He (Modi) has a Tughlaqi style of functioning and says different things at different times," Mamata said. "Tughlaqi decisions of Tughlaqi government have crippled the economy," she said at the annual 'Joydeb mela' in Birbhum. "Modi babu has become a salesman of plastic currency. Will people eat plastic", she said adding: "people do not have cash. People's money has been declared black and BJP's black money is white?" Mamata alleged that anyone who spoke out against the Centre was branded as corrupt and central agencies were sent after them. The chief minister, who on Monday termed the CBI as "Conspiracy Bureau of India", said, "CBI has been unleashed against the Trinamool Congress".
"America had blacklisted Modi once for riots. He hasn't changed after becoming PM. He is still hatching conspiracies", she said. "We urge everyone to come forward and protest. Let there be a tide of protests," she said. The TMC supremo said that the CPM had "destroyed Bengal. "CPM and BJP have teamed up. We have to defeat them. We have to develop Bengal," she added. Accusing Modi of being "totally arrogant", Mamata claimed alleged that he was responsible for over 120 deaths owing to demonetisation. "Modi babu, you are totally arrogant. You are responsible for over 120 deaths," she said in a tweet. The chief minister also attached a state-wise list of persons who, she said died owing to reasons linked to demonetisation of high value currency notes.
"Demonetisation has put people in utter distress. 30 percent people have lost their jobs due to demonetisation. The people are suffering. Workers under 100 Days' Work Scheme are not receiving wages," she claimed. The chief minister laid the foundation stone of a 'Baul Academy' and said: "We have to develop the academy into a world-class exhibition centre where people from across the world will come". The Trinamool Congress MPs will meet President Pranab Mukherjee on Wednesday at the end of their three-day dharna to draw his attention towards "hardship" being faced by the common man due to demonitisation. The MPs have been staging protest against the Modi government's demonitisation drive and the arrest of their party MPs in the alleged Rose Valley chit fund scam here since January 9. "There is political vendetta against us because we are opposing Modi government's demonitisation drive. We will meet the President tomorrow at 2 pm after the end of the three-day dharna in the capital," according to a senior TMC leader. Raising slogans like "Modi hatao desh bachao", about 30 TMC MPs from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha staged a sit-in near the party office at South Avenue for the second day. Announcing its plan to continue with agitations till the ouster of Narendra Modi from the helm, the Trinamool Congress today said it foresaw Mamata Banerjee as a future prime minister. "This could happen one day. After all, we are a political party which is growing by the day. People may decide that (making Mamata the PM)," TMC general secretary and West Bengal state unit chief Subrata Bakshi said here.
Bakshi was speaking to reporters after addressing TMC's 'Fight Against Financial Emergency' rally, organised by the Odisha unit of the party. "Looking at the prevailing political situation in the country, all the secular parties are assembling on one platform. However, who will lead them will only be answered in the future," Bakshi said. Claiming that the TMC's stock was improving by the day, he said: "We had only two MPs in 2004, which increased to 19 in 2009 and to 34 in 2014. Therefore, the party will grow further in 2019 too." Asked about the party's existence outside West Bengal, Bakshi said it was stepping into different states. "Today, we are staging agitations in eight states against Modi's demonetisation. We will hold such agitations in 29 states in the next three-four months," he said, adding that party chief Mamata Banerjee had all along been a people's leader who hit the streets whenever the people were put to trouble.
"Our leader opposed demonetisation the very next day Modi announced it. We will fight it out as the people are behind Mamata Banerjee," Bakshi said, claiming that the BJP's strength had been "declining by the day" after the 2014 general elections.