Kotulpur/Indus (WB): West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday (March 22) said that the BJP makes "tall promises" ahead of elections, and never delivers during a rally in Bankura district. Hitting out at the BJP over its promise to dole out "free" rice and pulses to people, she claimed that the saffron party has "roped in goons to threaten people. These goons might visit households and ask women with folded hands to vote for them or face the threat of being herded out".
She said "The BJP peddles lies before elections. They promise rice, pulses, chakri (job), everything. After polls, they are nowhere to be seen. I want to know what happened to the party's promise of depositing Rs 15 lakh in the bank accounts of every citizen (before the 2014 Lok Sabha polls)."
Addressing women, Mamata Banerjee said, "Be ready with cooking utensils to chase away such elements if they issue a veiled threat," adding that the saffron party has hired 'borgis' (plunderers) from outside to "loot votes". She also mocked the BJP's promise of 33 per cent reservation for women in government jobs, and said, "They couldn't take necessary steps to ensure 33 per cent female representation among elected representatives on different platforms."
"On the contrary, the TMC has already made sure that women get 50 per cent representation in panchayat and local bodies. Also 40 per cent of TMC representatives in Parliament are women."
The party gave the assurance that 'Annapurna Canteen' will be set up across the state to provide cooked food three times a day at Rs 5 per meal. It also said that subsidised ration would be doled out through the public distribution system -- rice or wheat at Rs 1 per kg, dal at Rs 30 per kg, salt at Rs 3 per kg and sugar at Rs 5 per kg.
Accusing the BJP of issuing diktat over food and clothes in states where the party is in power, she said, "They (saffron camp leaders) dictate whether someone should wear a sari or any other attire. They decide if a pregnant woman should eat eggs."
If the BJP is elected to power, it will roll out the NPR and NRC exercises and remove names of bona-fide citizens from these registers, she said.
"The party wants to change the history and geography of India... They change names of educational institutions at will. A cricket stadium in Gujarat has been named after PM Modi. One day they will change the name of our nation." "Narendra Modi will soon be projected as someone bigger than Ambedkar... Even bigger than Tagore," she claimed.
Taking potshots at the saffron camp's vow to free Bengal of corruption, Banerjee said, "We are yet to know the details of the money spent under PM Cares Fund. What all has been going on under the garb of disinvestment is no secret. I, on the other hand, don't take single paise as salary. I have forfeited my allowance as a former MP, and as an MLA."
She said, "Modibabu, you should explain why you are so eager to sell off stakes and close down Coal India, BSNL, MTNL and SAIL. Why you are so keen on closing down nationalised banks."
Mamata slams CPI(M), Congress
Training guns on the CPI(M) and the Congress, she said, "CPI(M) goons had unleashed terror in Kotulpur, Chomkaitala belts (in the 90s and early 2000), when I was an opposition leader. They had even attacked me when I visited the affected areas to be on side of victims' families. Those same CPI(M) harmads (goons) have joined the BJP."
Talking about the injury she sustained on her foot during electioneering in Nandigram on March 10, the TMC boss claimed she was victim of a conspiracy hatched by rivals.
She further said, "They had hit my head, my back, my hands and almost every part of my body in the past, you all (people) know that. This time, they (rivals) decided to target my leg to stop me from stepping out of home. But they don't know Mamata Banerjee well."
(With Agency Inputs)