Mamata hits out at Rajnath Singh for CAA implementation remark

Ausgram/Galsi (WB), Apr 24 (PTI) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday criticised Defence Minister Rajnath Singh for saying that nobody in the world can stop the implementation of the CAA, and asserted that she will continue to resist the law.

Banerjee, also the Trinamool Congress supremo, also remarked that Singh has now appeared reliant on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s favour.

“You are surviving at the mercy of Modi. You are saluting Modi daily to save your chair. You or Nitin Gadkari could have been the PM today. There would have been no problem. At least there would have been a gentleman on the chair who knows the minimum courtesy,” she said.

While addressing an election rally in Murshidabad on Sunday, Singh had said that no power in the world would be able to stop the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

“We have made a law to give citizenship to those who have been persecuted in countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan for their religion. But Mamata Banerjee is not allowing it to be implemented. We will introduce the Act. No power in the world can stop its implementation,” Singh had said.

Stating that the TMC will resist the implementation of the CAA, NRC and the Uniform Civil Code, Banerjee said, “We will see how powerful you are.”

Banerjee was speaking at an election rally for the party’s candidate for the Durgapur-Bardhaman Lok Sabha constituency Kirti Azad.

She claimed that Singh and others in the BJP were making contentious remarks solely for publicity.

Referring to the Calcutta High Court’s order cancelling appointments of 25,753 teachers and non-teaching staff in state government-sponsored and aided schools, Banerjee alleged that the high court has become ‘tirthakendra’ (pilgrimage site) of the BJP.

Addressing a public meeting at Ausgram in the state’s Birbhum district, she claimed that her government is not able to provide jobs to the state’s youth because of court orders.

She said, “The BJP has no work except moving the high court against the state government… Bail is being granted to criminals and people accused of murder. I will not talk about judges but I have the right to talk about judgments. If there are faults, there should be scrutiny. But how were 26,000 jobs cancelled?”

She also predicted that the BJP would not come to power in the Lok Sabha elections this time.

“What you are seeing in surveys is made up. The BJP has spent crores of rupees to create fake surveys,” the chief minister claimed.

Banerjee asserted that the saffron party would not be able to get the seats it had won in states like UP, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan in 2019.

“In Tamil Nadu, you (BJP) will get a big zero. The Left-Congress will get a majority in Kerala. They will fare poorly in Karnataka and Telangana. The BJP will not get even half the seats it won the previous time,” she said.

The TMC chief heaped praises on Anubrata Mondal, the party’s Birbhum district president who was arrested by the CBI in a cattle smuggling case.

“Anubrata (Mondal) is a kind-hearted person. None returned empty-handed after seeking his help… In every election, he was kept under house arrest and was not allowed to move out. Raids are being carried out in the residences of our leaders. They (central agencies) are threatening them to either vote for the BJP or face the ED,” she said.

Addressing another election rally for TMC’s Bolpur candidate Asit Mal, Banerjee wondered why the polls are being conducted in seven phases amid the severe heat wave across the country.

“Earlier, the poll process used to be over by May 2 or 3. This year they have stretched it for three months, amid severe weather conditions. The Election Commission has planned the polls to satisfy the BJP,” Banerjee said.