Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, calling him a ‘Tughlaq,’ and accusing his government of scaring away industrialists from investing in the state.
Speaking at the India Today Conclave East 2017 in Kolkata today, Mamata Banerjee said, “You (the Centre) tell companies not to invest in West Bengal. They say not to go to Bengal. Our projects are pending. Why these projects are not being cleared?”
Following are the 15 things Mamata Banerjee said at Conclave East 2017:
1. Bengal is back on the map. We are growing in every sector, whether it is GDP, ease of doing business, agriculture or industry. Despite a legacy of 34 years, we are moving ahead.
2. Historically, irrespective of which party is in power, the Centre has given priority to western Indian States. We are not begging. We want what is rightfully ours. On the one hand, there is a State with 47 ports while our request for permission to build two ports in Bengal is falling on deaf ears.
3. There is no cooperative federalism in the country now. It is ‘super emergency’ now. The Centre is telling industrialists not to invest in Bengal. Democracy is finished.
4. Industrialists are under threat. More than 12,000 farmers have died. The media is under the scanner and cannot raise its voice. In fact, a section of the Delhi-based media has become His Master’s Voice for the BJP.
5. I do not have any personal vendetta against anyone. It is our responsibility to collectively fight for issues concerning the people. We must work together for the greater interest.
6. The BJP has no chance in Bengal. They only have a propaganda machinery and sponsored social media. They believe in divide and rule. They incite riots because they cannot fight us politically.
7. When I am on the chair, I work for all. It is wrong to say there is appeasement of minorities in Bengal. It is a propaganda by the BJP and a section of the national media. I am proud of the people of Bengal. The festive season passed off peacefully without any untoward incident.
8. We inherited a huge legacy of debt from the Left. Yet, we doubled our GDP and revenue earnings. We are running so many social schemes despite the debt. I have personally met the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister for the restructuring of debt of not just Bengal but other States too.
9. Narendra Modi is behaving like Tughlaq. They listed three targets for demonetisation – recovering black money, stopping terrorist activities and bringing in transparency. They have failed on all three counts. Even GST was passed hurriedly. Amit Mitra’s voice was not heard in the GST Council.
10. They conducted elections in Bengal by imposing curfew and Section 144. In Gujarat, Central forces, state forces and various agencies are all working together.
11. I have not changed at all. Politics is not a piece of cloth that you change three times a day. I am always with the people. Their trust matters the most in a democracy.
12. Today, union ministers are busy in expanding their party in different States. There is no development. This government believes only in bhashan, not action. They gave funds towards flood relief to BJP-ruled States but Bengal did not receive a penny.
13. The Centre, with their MP from the region, played a dirty game in the Hills. A conspiracy was hatched based on a rumour. Now peace has returned to the Hills.
14. Our ideology has always been pro-people, come what may. We are ready to go to jail; we won’t do any ‘understanding’ with them (BJP).
15. In Bengal, the income of farmers has doubled in six years. We have given employment to 81 lakh people. More than 100 crore man-days have been created. Despite non-cooperation by the Centre, we are focussed on growth in infrastructure. Bengal will lead the country in future.