The Left Front Sunday launched a no-holds-barred attack on both the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, claiming that it was a matter of time before the Trinamool Congress forged an alliance with the BJP.
Addressing a massive rally at the Brigade Ground here, Left leaders also tore into Modi’s statement made at a BJP rally at the same venue on February 5 that “people of Bengal will enjoy the benefits of having ‘Didi’ in Bengal and Narendra Modi in Delhi”.
“You will regret if you go for Modi laddoo in one hand and a Mamata laddoo in the other,” former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said, warning the electorate against being lured by the BJP’s “double laddoo” offer of a Modi-Mamata combination in the Lok Sabha polls.
Interestingly, the Left leadership was soft on the Congress, sparing it criticism at the rally, attended by at least 3 lakh people.
CPM general secretary Prakash Karat said time was near when the Trinamool would forge an alliance with the BJP. “From this ground, Modiji invited Mamataji to form an alliance with the BJP. She was a minister in the (Atal Bihari) Vajpayee government from 1999 to 2001, after which she quit the alliance. But after Modi became Gujarat chief minister in 2002, she again became an NDA partner and was awarded with a Cabinet berth. In 2009 and 2011, the TMC forged an alliance with the Congress, and so time has again come for the party to enter into an alliance with the BJP and NDA,” Karat said at the rally.
He added that there was no difference between the economic policies of the Congress and the BJP, and only the Third Front could give the people a viable alternative. Stating that in Gujarat only big business had gained, not the general people, Karat said the Gujarat model flaunted by Modi would spell disaster for the country. “They gave all the benefits to big industries while the poor suffered. That is the Gujarat model. Two thousands Muslims died in the riots in 2002 during Modi’s regime. That is the Gujarat model. People should be cautious of this model,” he said.
Karat also lashed out at Modi for terming the Left-led Third Front “third grade”, and said it was actually the other way round. “We will see where Modi will be after the elections.” he said.
Criticising the TMC government, Karat said his head hangs in shame everytime he hears about atrocities on women in Bengal.
Left Front chairman Biman Bose accused Mamata of helping the Jamaat-e-Islami of Bangladesh indirectly by weakening the secular forces of the country. “She did not accompany Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Bangladesh to sign the Teesta accord. She also did not sign the accord on enclaves. All this weakened the hands of (Bangladeshi) PM Sheikh Hasina and strengthened the Jamaat,’’ Bose said.
Leader of the Opposition in the state Assembly Suryakanta Mishra issued a “chargesheet” against the state government, alleging it had failed on all fronts. He alleged that Mamata was just squandering public money.
Other Left leaders alleged that the TMC had indulged in horse-trading during the Rajya Sabha elections by using money it had got from the Saradha Group, that went bust last year.
Anti-Corruption-Branch arrested 3 persons including a government official for allegedly taking bribe.