Railway services being sabotaged to discredit me: Mamata Banerjee

Railway minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday alleged that efforts were being made to sabotage railway services in order to discredit her and asked saboteurs to challenge her politically instead of endangering passengers` lives.

Updated: Dec 13, 2010, 00:01 AM IST

Kolkata: Railway minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday alleged that efforts were being made to sabotage railway services in order to discredit her and asked saboteurs to challenge her politically instead of endangering passengers` lives.

Without naming her arch rival CPM, the Trinamool Congress chief alleged that it had become jealous of the railway`s performance and was indulging in sabotaging railway services by removing fish plates and impairing tracks which was causing train accidents.

"But while doing so, lives of innocent passengers are being put to danger," she said at an event organised by National Federation of Railwaymen in Howrah district.

Asking the Marxists to fight her politically, she said, "Fight me politically. I accept the challenge, but don`t target the railways. Railways is the lifeline of the nation. Those who are trying to attack the railways this way would get smashed."

She urged railway employees to remain vigilant in order to detect sabotage attempts and prevent such attacks.

Pointing out that she was pro-industry but against the kind of industry that destroys farming, she said, "We want commercial utilization of land for industrial purposes. But CPM is crying hoarse that we are selling railway property."

She said railway unions are consulted before implementing schemes on railway land and she was against forcible acquisition of land or use of guns for the purpose.

"We will not go for industrialization by making people cry as what happened at Singur," Mamata said.

PTI