On the day West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee hit the streets against the Centre, her minister Chandranath Sinha was seen taking up the broom and sweeping a road as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pet Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
While Sinha’s participation has raised eyebrows within Trinamool Congress, the Minister for Fisheries asserted that he was “taken for ride” by the organisers of the cleanliness progamme at Bolpur in Birbhum district. On Monday, he was photographed sweeping a street along with former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and a few other local leaders.
“I was told the programme was for controlling the traffic in the town, and when I went there I was handed over the broom. But, I did not know it was a Swachh Bharat Abhiyan programme. I was taken off-guard. But I will definitely give them a thorough dressing down,’’ Sinha told The Indian Express. The event was organised by an NGO based in Kolkata.
On Sinha’s participation, his ministerial colleague and party spokesperson Partha Chatterjee said he would look into the matter. Meanwhile, after joining the cleanliness mission, Chatterjee said, “This is one programme of Modi which I support wholeheartedly. At present, I am not keeping very well, but whenever I come out on some occasion I am appalled to see the condition at both Bolpur and Shantiniketan. They have become so dirty.. such filth and squalor littered around in Shantiniketan alone. If just 1 per cent of the Indian population takes the programme seriously, India will be much cleaner.’’