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After China, Mamata Banerjee’s Chicago visit in August called off

The Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago had organised a special programme on August 26 to mark the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s historic speech at the Parliament of World’s Religions.

By: Express News Service | Kolkata |
June 26, 2018 5:23:14 am
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

After Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee cancelled her China trip last week, her trip to Chicago scheduled in August has also been called off.
The Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago had organised a special programme on August 26 to mark the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s historic speech at the Parliament of World’s Religions. The Ramakrishna Mission had invited Mamata as the chief guest for the event.

Sources in the state government said the president of Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago, Swami Ishatmananda wrote a letter on June 11 to the chief minister and cited some “unforeseen difficulties” and “the sudden demise of a monk of Ramakrishna Mission, Belur Math,” as the reasons for canceling the event.

“We are thankful that you accepted our invitation to attend our programme celebrating the 125th anniversary of the Parliament of World’s Religions, which was to be held at the Art Institute of Chicago on August 26. We are sorry to inform you that due to the sudden demise of Swami Abhiramananda, assistant general secretary, trustee of Ramakrishna Mission and member of the governing body of Ramakrishna Mission, as well as unforeseen difficulties, we have had to cancel the programme. We remain ever thankful for your support and regret any inconvenience this may cause you,” Swami Ishatmananda wrote in his letter dated June 11. Swami Abhiramananda passed away on June 8. A response from the government was unavailable over this development.

Last week, the chief minister had to cancel her trip to China at the last minute following no confirmation about a scheduled political exchange programme from Chinese government representatives and members of Communist Party of China. “It has now been intimated by our Ambassador in China that the political meetings at the appropriate level under the Exchange Programme could not be confirmed. Therefore, the purpose of my visit with a delegation to China is of no use,” Mamata wrote in a Facebook post. “However, I wish the continuation of the friendship of India and China in the days to come and it should strengthen further in the interest of both the countries,” the chief minister added.

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