Bankura: Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee on Sunday said her party favours peace through development in tribal Jangalmahal area of West Bengal and demanded withdrawal of the joint forces from there.
"Peace cannot come from the barrel of a gun but only through development ... Let the joint force go back," she told a public meeting here after signing an MoU with NTPC for
setting up a captive power plant at Adra and laying the foundation of a midlife coach rehabilitation plant of the Railways at Anara in neighbouring Purulia district.
"CPI-M is using a section of the joint force to do whatever it likes in the area and is also sending goons to intimidate the opposition. I have brought the situation in
Jangalmahal to the notice of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Home Minister P Chidamabaram," Banerjee claimed.
She said the CPI-M would find during the Assembly elections next year that the people of Jangalmahal, which comprise the tribal areas of West Midnapore, Bankura and
Purulia districts, are not with it.
"How many armed goons does the CPI-M have ? One lakh, two lakhs ? There are ten crore people in West Bengal. They will give you (CPI-M) a fitting reply.
"I will oust CPI-M politically from Bengal. I promise I will," she said.
The Railway Minister alleged that CPI-M cadres were killing TC workers in Jangalmahal to retain the 42 seats in the area.
If voted to power, she said her party would address various demands of the state police force.
Accusing Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee of using "intemperate language" against her and TC at a rally here yesterday, Banerjee said, "I could have used equally bad language against him but I will not, as I believe in political retaliation and not a duel of bad language."
Bhattacharjee had called her a `liar` and TC a `party of liars`.
Harping on development, the Trinamool chief said that it can be brought about only by caring for people and everybody irrespective of party colours should participate.
"Keep faith on Trinamool Congress as it is the only hope in Bengal."
Referring to Bhattacharjee`s taunts that she merely flagged off trains everyday but unable to provide any jobs, Banerjee said "I have been the Railway Minister for only a
year. How many jobs have the Left Front government in its 34 years rule?"
"During my tenure as Railway Minister, I have taken up the initiative of setting up a large number of industries. Where will you (Bhattacharjee) be when these industries start
Banerjee said she had taken the initiative to set up industrial units at Dankuni, Kanchrapara, Sankrail, New Jalpaiguri, Budge Budge, Andal, Kulti and Anara in the
state besides signing a MoU with NTPC for a power plant at Adra.
The minister, who has opposed land acquisition for industries, said she was not in a position to set up any industry in Bankura as Railways did not have any land there.
"I welcome any move by individuals to give land to the Railways," she said, adding that the land needed for the two projects at Adra and Anara were not forcibly acquired.
"I had not acquired land with the help of the gun,” she said apparently hinting at the state government`s botched efforts at Nandigram.
She said efforts were on to provide Bandwan-Purulia- Jhargram rail connection to develop Jangalmahal.
Referring to the suspension of night running of trains in the Kharagpur-Adra section since the Jnaneswari disaster, she said the Howrah-Chakradharpur passenger, which has been suspended, would be rescheduled by three hours to fit in to the night timings.
Banerjee also urged for early release of the abducted officer and his friend.