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Abhishek Banerjee Slams Bengal Governor, Vows to Continue MGNREGA Protest – News18


Published By: Pragati Pal

Last Updated: October 08, 2023, 23:58 IST

Kolkata [Calcutta], India

The ruling Trinamool Congress in West Bengal has accused the BJP-led NDA government of withholding Rs 15,000 crore in dues to the state under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and PM Awas Yojana.
(Image: PTI/)

Senior TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee also condemned the BJP for allegedly using central agencies to intimidate TMC leaders, referring to the recent searches conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) at 12 locations

Senior TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee, leading a three-day sit-in outside Raj Bhavan, on Sunday criticised Governor CV Ananda Bose for his alleged pro-BJP conduct and pledged to continue the agitation until he received satisfactory response on clearance of state’s dues under MGNREGA.

Banerjee also condemned the BJP for allegedly using central agencies to intimidate TMC leaders, referring to the recent searches conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) at 12 locations, including the residences of senior West Bengal Minister Firhad Hakim and TMC MLA Madan Mitra, as part of an investigation into alleged irregularities in recruitment processes within civic bodies.

“We have learnt that the governor has written to the state government questioning the sit-in outside Raj Bhavan. He has called for the removal of the sit-in. My question is where was his concern for democratic norms when BJP leaders used Raj Bhavan for their political activities?” Banerjee said.

Bose on Sunday said he will meet those deprived of MGNREGA work and take up their grievances with New Delhi.

The governor also wrote to Chief Secretary HK Dwivedi inquiring whether permission was granted for the TMC’s ongoing sit-in outside Raj Bhavan.

Continuing his criticism of the governor, Banerjee noted that his predecessor, Jagdeep Dhankhar, who is now the Vice-President of India, was rewarded for opposing Bengal’s interests during his tenure.

He emphasised, “You are not the BJP’s governor; you are Bengal’s governor. On seven occasions in the past, the BJP marched to Raj Bhavan. Did you write any letters to the police then? No. So, why do you want the job card holders, who are deprived, to move away from this spot?” Banerjee expressed bewilderment as to why the governor had not yet met the TMC delegation, which is a precondition for withdrawing the sit-in.

He said, “We were not allowed to meet the minister of state for rural development in New Delhi and forcibly removed from Krishi Bhawan. We have a simple demand: the governor, as a representative of the Centre, should come and meet us and provide a satisfactory response regarding when the wages of MGNREGA job card holders will be released.” Banerjee said he had heard the governor was returning to Kolkata and expressed hope that the party’s delegation would be able to meet him.

“We have heard that he is a bit unwell, and we wish him a speedy recovery. We hope to meet him soon,”he added.

The sit-in, initiated by Abhishek Banerjee on Thursday, followed a gathering of TMC members and top leadership who marched to Raj Bhavan to protest the alleged withholding of West Bengal’s MGNREGA dues by the Centre.

In response to the CBI raids at the residences of Hakim and Mitra, Banerjee said such tactics would not yield any results.

He emphasised that frequent raids and summons from the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and CBI would not deter them, as they are staunch supporters of Mamata Banerjee.

Banerjee said, “The more the BJP tries to suppress us, the more resolute we will become.” The CBI conducted searches at 12 locations in various parts of the state as part of its investigation into alleged irregularities in recruitment processes within civic bodies. Hakim, who holds key positions in the TMC and the state government, was among the prominent figures targeted in the raids.

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)

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