Kolkata, May 14: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday said she has never seen such blatant use of money power in elections.
Addressing a public meeting at Jadavpur here, Ms Banerjee alleged that all this was hawala money.
“I have been elected as MP for 8 times and twice as an MLA. I have never seen such blatant use of money power. They have hijacked the state machinery. Crores of rupees are being distributed in Kolkata. All this is hawala money. They are distributing as much as Rs 5,000 per vote. Is this an election or a joke? ‘she asked.
“Shouldn’t their choppers be checked after they land? I have heard even CRPF vehicles are being used to ferry boxes of money. They bought votes in Tripura in this manner. They will not succeed in Bengal,” Ms Banerjee remarked.
The TMC supremo alleged, " Narendra Modi thinks he can win elections by using central forces? How can the forces fire on people? They are even coercing people to vote for BJP. How can they do so? They have no knowledge about our State, our language or our culture. "
She alleged the BJP want to indulge in divisive politics. They are trying to drive a wedge between people on religious lines, to reap political benefits
“This election is going on for nearly three months. I have never seen a longer poll process. The dates have been decided in a manner which will benefit the BJP,” The TMC supremo commented.
“We believe in the Constitution. But where will we go to seek justice? The media and the Election Commission are mute spectators. I have written to the EC on the use of money power. What steps are they taking? " the chief minister asked,
" They have managed the CPI(M) in many places. It is unfortunate. Left leaders like Indrajit Gupta or Buddhadeb Bhattacharya would not have allowed this. But the current leadership are bereft of ideology. The CPI(M) is surreptitiously helping the BJP, " she commented.
The TMC supremo said, " They must give an account of the work done by them and the promises fulfilled. They are spending money to control Facebook, Twitter and social media. They are spreading lies on social media. It has become fake-book. They are sharing photos of Bangladesh and passing them off as that of Bengal. "
The chief minister said, " Not a single leader in India today is able to speak up. They are intimidating everyone in the name of agencies like ED, CBI and IT Department. "
Ms Banerjee said, " There must be an enquiry into demonetisation. RBI was dead against the move but he carried it out on his whim. They turned their black money into white, bought land in many States. They have set up a party headquarter worth crores. "
The chief minister said, " Bengal was number one in political violence in the past. Now there is peace. Some media houses hype up stray incidents for increasing their TRPs. "
The TMC supremo said, " 98 per cent seats in Panchayat elections in Tripura were uncontested. Not a single media spoke out. No one is free to speak against Modi, or else they’d get threat calls. The owners of media houses have sold themselves to Modi. "
“They have the audacity to call Bengal ‘Kangal’ and then have the gall to ask for votes. How dare they. Abuse me, if you want. Do not insult Bengal,” she said.
“They post pictures of Maa Kali on Twitter and claimed it was Maa Durga. They have the temerity to say that Durga Puja is not celebrated in Bengal. How dare they? Saraswati Puja is not celebrated in schools and colleges? Even clubs celebrate the festivals.” Ms Banerjee commented.
“I had decided to give financial assistance to 28,000 clubs in Bengal to encourage them to perform Durga Puja. 40 clubs of Kolkata got an income tax notice. And they accuse us of not allowing Durga Puja? Let them come for the Red Road Carnival this year,” the chief minister said.
She alleged, " They talk of Hinduism. Do they know how many gods and goddesses are worshipped by us? They could not even build a Ram temple in five years. "
“When I was the Railway Minister, I started so many railway projects. But these projects are stagnating under the current central government,” the chief minister said.
" Migrant workers from Bengal have been persecuted in Gujarat and Rajasthan. They are even beating up boys and girls in UP. We are very liberal. Who are they to decide what one can eat or wear? " she asked
“I have struggled in the face of bullets and guns. I am not afraid. You cannot intimidate me with central forces,” the TMC supremo added. (UNI)