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Fear prevails as celebrities in Kolkata forced to speak against farmers, says Minister

Many celebrities were being forced to speak against the ongoing farmers’ protests and an atmosphere of fear and intimidation had been created in the country by the Central government, state minister and TMC leader Bratya Basu said on Friday. Basu, who is also a theatre personality, said tweets of some celebrities had identical words and […]

By: Express News Service | Kolkata |
Updated: February 6, 2021 8:36:12 am
TMC leader Bratya Basu. (File)

Many celebrities were being forced to speak against the ongoing farmers’ protests and an atmosphere of fear and intimidation had been created in the country by the Central government, state minister and TMC leader Bratya Basu said on Friday.

Basu, who is also a theatre personality, said tweets of some celebrities had identical words and phrases.

“Tweets by international celebrities like Rihanna and Greta Thunberg show that the farmers’ agitation has created ripples across the world. Now, a section of celebrities have made comments against the protest and targeted the celebrities who have supported it. The trolling shows how fear and intimidation are prevailing in the country,” said Basu.

Comparing the state of affairs of the country with Bengal’s, the minister said, “Despite so much criticism and personal attacks against our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, democracy prevails in West Bengal. We are not a government that will imprison activists like Varvara Rao for speaking against the establishment. Our government is not vindictive like the BJP,” he said.

In reference to TMC dissidents being taken to Delhi in a special flight to join the BJP, the TMC leader said the induction of several Bengali actors into TMC had proved that not everyone sold themselves to the lure of chartered flights.

The comment from Basu came after he inducted veteran Bengali actor Dipankar Dey, who has worked in films by Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen and Tapan Sinha, into the party at the Trinamool Bhawan. Actor Bharat Kaul, musician Saona Khan and television actor Lovely Maitra too joined
the TMC.

The state government’s ‘Duare Sarkar’ (government at the doorstep) initiative, Basu said, had received a great response.

“As many as 2.7 crore people have already visited the camps, and 77 per cent of them have registered themselves to avail the benefits of 12 state schemes. The Opposition is only spreading canards about the campaign,” he said.

Asked to comment on BJP’s plans to hold a rathcyatra across the state, state minister Bratya Basu said the TMC has nothing to say about it. “But people know BJP’s rath yatra will be bereft of the ideology of Sri Chaitanya. It will not promote love among the people, but only hatred and division.”

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