Eye on Delhi, Mamata Banerjee scouts for a Hindi teacher, gets a dictionary

Ahead of that, TMC sources said, Banerjee is looking for a Hindi teacher and has purchased a Bengali-Hindi dictionary, too.

Written by Aniruddha Ghosal | Kolkata | Updated: November 25, 2016 1:28 pm
mamata banerjee, demonetisation, mamata linguistic choice, mamata rally, mamata banerjee jantar mantar rally, narendra modi, TMC, mamata hindi teacher, mamata learn hindi, bengali hindi, black money, mamata demonetisation protest, indian express news, india news Mamata Banerjee

CHIEF MINISTER Mamata Banerjee’s linguistic choices are rarely accidental. She speaks Nepali in Darjeeling and tries out Santhal in Midnapore. So when she began translating her Twitter feed into Hindi, apart from the usual English, party leaders admitted that the decision was “conscious, a signal of intent”.

After cementing her position in West Bengal, Banerjee plans to increase her national profile. And, after her recent rally at Jantar Mantar in Delhi, she is preparing to address rallies in Lucknow and Patna next week to campaign nationally against Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his government’s demonetisation policy.

Ahead of that, TMC sources said, Banerjee is looking for a Hindi teacher and has purchased a Bengali-Hindi dictionary, too.

WATCH VIDEO: Here’s How PM Narendra Modi Hit Out At His Critics Questioning Demonetisation

Banerjee acknowledged that as a politician who began her career as a parliamentarian in Delhi, her spoken Hindi has become “rusty”. “I was in Delhi from 1984. First, as a parliamentarian and then as a member of the Union Cabinet. I spoke in Hindi then. But over the years, particularly after 2011, my Hindi has become rusty with lack of practice,” she told The Indian Express.

According to a close aide, Banerjee’s politics is about “instinct”. “Take for instance, Modi expressing sorrow that people standing in queues were suffering. She immediately felt that this was an instance of ‘rubbing salt into wounds’. But she had to ask someone what the exact translation of the phrase was in Hindi before making a statement,” said the aide.

Banerjee, the aide said, is also working on a book of poetry in Hindi. Her party, meanwhile, is likely to publicise once again a biography of the Chief Minister in Hindi titled “Meri Sangharshpurnyatra”, which was first published in 2013. Party leaders like Vivek Gupta, TMC MP and editor of the Hindi daily ‘Sanmarg’, are also contributing to Mamata’s speeches, said sources.

On November 16, Banerjee put out her first Tweet in Hindi, announcing her joint rally at Azadpur Mandi in the national capital alongside her Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal. Four days later, she hit out at Modi in a series of tweets, first in Hindi followed by translations in English.

“Pradhan mantri ji, aap har virodhi ko bhrashtachari kahte hai. Aap kya jadugar hai. Janta ki awaz suniye. Unki takleef ko samjhiye. Janta is takleef ko bhula nahi sakti. Janta ki takleef ko mazak mat samjhiye. Aap ki policy se janta ko takleef kyun hoga, rahat honi chahiye. Har state ki, pure desh ki economy tahas nahas ho rahi hai. Janta dukh mein aur aap khushi mana rahe hai (PM, you are equating all opposition with corruption. Are you a magician? Listen to the voice of the people. Understand their discomfort. People will not be able to forget this.
Your policy shouldn’t bring discomfort to people, but comfort. Every state and the country’s economy has been destroyed. People are unhappy and you’re celebrating).”

Party leaders and those close to Banerjee said the tweets not only marked a departure — she had been accused of criticising the BJP while maintaining a ‘strategic distance’ on Modi — but also made it clear that she was now looking to increase her national reach.

After returning to Kolkata from Delhi, Banerjee held a series of meetings with state officials to assess the impact of demonetisation while simultaneously ensuring that her rallying cry against Modi would be picked up by leaders across the political spectrum, said sources.

“One of the problems faced by Mamata is that she has the reputation of being mercurial and unpredictable. This is a problem when you’re trying to bring the opposition together,” said the aide.

TMC sources said that Kejriwal had expressed concern over sharing the demonetisation protest space with the Congress, the AAP’s prime opposition in Punjab and Delhi. And others had expressed similar ideological and political problems with sharing space with Shiv Sena.

Banerjee, though, has remained constant in her stand against what she described as “a black decision of a black government”.

“I don’t have any ego issues on this. I am reacting because common people have been inconvenienced… farmers and the middle class. Not just for Bengal, we need to campaign for the entire country. I will do what I can, but I hope all opposition parties will unite against the Modi government. I hope there will be opposition solidarity for the masses of our country,” she said.

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First Published on: November 25, 2016 5:54 am
  1. M
    MyTake
    Nov 25, 2016 at 2:16 am
    Mamata is one of those Quranic women who are told they to have half the brain (as says the Quran to its followers)! In Corr of law two women equals in weight to one man! That's the only reason she is so favorite of the Muslim Vote Bank because they can easily egg on her!!!
    Reply
    1. M
      MyTake
      Nov 25, 2016 at 2:10 am
      You can't teach an old d o g new tricks!!
      Reply
      1. R
        Rsc
        Nov 25, 2016 at 4:58 am
        next prime minister: Mamta Banerjee
        Reply
        1. R
          ravinder
          Nov 25, 2016 at 4:00 am
          Pagaloki kami nahi hai India me....lt;br/gt;Ye pagal ko kisne bataya ki ye PM candidate hai?lt;br/gt;Mayavati, Mulayam ya Mamta in mese koi bhi PM bana to mai India chhod dunga
          Reply
          1. V
            Vedic_Citizen
            Nov 25, 2016 at 1:03 am
            Mamta as PM Pappu as deputy PM is right combination to ruin a nation
            Reply
            1. D
              Deepak Thakur
              Nov 25, 2016 at 6:21 am
              didi, didi, didi, didi, sine di wah lt;br/gt;didi wah, didi, didi di ya sana didi di ya wee yeah ehlt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Khaled's Didi Lyrics sounds better than Didi's Hindi. Both can't be understood by me but at least I can enjoy Khaled's Song.
              Reply
              1. V
                Viswanath
                Nov 25, 2016 at 2:54 am
                This lady should also scout for some IQ
                Reply
                1. N
                  Ninad
                  Nov 25, 2016 at 3:00 am
                  Is she dreaming that 3 mool will flourish in other state....how pathetic
                  Reply
                  1. A
                    AML
                    Nov 25, 2016 at 3:25 am
                    Starting with Nehru, there never has been a prime minister so fluent in Hindi as Mr. Narendra Modi. He combines his Hindi erudition with an unmatched oratorial style not even a professional actor can match. His only flaws are his inability to correctly pronounce words containing the Urdu words containing the sounds of kh, gh, f, and z.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;No amount of coaching will convert Mamata Banerjee into a Hindi speaker like Narendra Modi.
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                    1. A
                      avi
                      Nov 25, 2016 at 2:42 am
                      Too late for Mental Bannerji to learn Hindi ! BHALO ACHEE ?
                      Reply
                      1. D
                        Dash
                        Nov 25, 2016 at 6:41 am
                        The 2nd most disgsting and corrupt lady is living fool's paradise. BibiBano,sharda,narda,Malda...yaad hai na?
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                        1. A
                          arun dass
                          Nov 25, 2016 at 4:17 am
                          Dear Mamata yy , the concubine of Khujliwal , It seems you have contaminated Scabies from Khujli-so called aspirant of PM like Ialian Pappu , Cant u realise the humiliation / insult of Kejri....somebody has put u on a " channe ki ped " ...u are a Bandit woman I know this , u have cheated my hard earned Rs 50,000 , WHY ....and when will u return that amount.....u are fit for Bangladesh only...
                          Reply
                          1. K
                            Kaliyug
                            Nov 25, 2016 at 6:33 pm
                            No just read the Bhagawad Gita, it has all the knowledge one would need. Do your duty without any eye for profit or praise, stop using the Muslims in your vote banks, they are dangerous for any security situation in India. Stop supporting your Sarada scam artists and return the illgotten wealth back to the people.
                            Reply
                            1. C
                              chintan jhunjhunwala
                              Nov 25, 2016 at 4:30 pm
                              during after independence wb was one of the top industrial state. now you have to turn the sheet upside down to see where wb is standing
                              Reply
                              1. D
                                dd
                                Nov 25, 2016 at 3:40 am
                                IE has agenda to divert people...Now Khujli is not giving news any more so they need other cartoon for more news....
                                Reply
                                1. D
                                  dd
                                  Nov 25, 2016 at 3:55 am
                                  IE's irresponsible campaign against PM Modi..Sounds like IE is losing lots of money..
                                  Reply
                                  1. D
                                    dd
                                    Nov 25, 2016 at 3:39 am
                                    Mamta is busy in depositing money in Jan Dhan account ...
                                    Reply
                                    1. D
                                      DP
                                      Nov 25, 2016 at 3:28 am
                                      Mamta Didi will Trump Modiji. She has lost battles, but never wars.
                                      Reply
                                      1. D
                                        Dharmesh Shah
                                        Nov 25, 2016 at 8:28 am
                                        She is doing well in her state and shall continue to do so rather than focusing her attention else where. Out-side her state no one likes her ...... even janta family will not back her.....
                                        Reply
                                        1. S
                                          Suresh Hattangadi
                                          Nov 25, 2016 at 12:53 am
                                          She will only have Bengali and BangladeshI voters.
                                          Reply
                                          1. K
                                            Kay Gee
                                            Nov 25, 2016 at 5:44 am
                                            Didi to be PM of india first requirement is 56 inches chaste or am to one family.
                                            Reply
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