January 24, 2021 4:35:50 am
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday pitched for four national capitals, including Kolkata, on a rotation basis and Parliament sessions at “different places”.
“I believe that India must have four rotating capitals. Why should Delhi decide all things? We should have four different capitals at the four corners of the country. And Parliament sessions should be held in different places in the country,” Banerjee told a gathering after a rally to celebrate the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose in Kolkata.
To buttress her point, she said Kolkata was the national capital under the British rule and said it should be declared the “National Capital of Bengal”.
Banerjee attacked the Central government for its delay in declaring January 23 a national holiday and building a memorial for Netaji.
“I protest the Central government’s decision’s delay in declaring Netaji’s birth anniversarya national holiday. You are building new parliament and buying new planes, but why no memorial for Netaji?” the Chief Minister asked.
“You can name any port after Shyama Prasad Mukherjee… We have no objection. But I got (former prime minister) Rajiv Gandhi to name the Kolkata airport after Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose,” she said. In January last year, the Central government had renamed the Kolkata Port Trust after Mukherjee, the founder of BJP’s predecessor Bharatiya Jan Sangh.
Banerjee also demanded that the Centre revive the Planning Commission, saying it was conceptualised by Netaji. The commission was replaced by the NITI Aayog in 2015.
The rally led by Banerjee was kicked off from Shyambazar after blowing conch shells at 12.15 pm — the time when Netaji was born on this day in 1897. It concluded at Red Road where she paid tribute to the freedom fighter by offering flowers at his statue.
She announced that the Republic Day parade in Kolkata would also be dedicated to Netaji. The state government also formed a committee for conducting a year-long celebration of Netaji’s birth anniversary.
“Homage to Deshnayak Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on his 125th birthday. He was a true leader & strongly believed in unity of all people. We are celebrating this day as #DeshNayakDibas. Government of West Bengal has also set up a committee to conduct year-long celebrations till January 23, 2022,” Banerjee tweeted.
She announced that a monument and a university would be dedicated to Netaji, another monument at Rajarhat to the erstwhile Azad Hind Fauj.
“A monument, named after Azad Hind Fauj, will be built at Rajarhat. A university named after Netaji is also being set up which shall be funded entirely by the state, and will have tie-ups with foreign universities,” she tweeted.
To honour Netaji’s popular slogan “Jai Hind”, the state government has proposed to form a National Cadet Corps-like organisation in state-run schools and colleges, and name it “Jai Hind Bahini”.
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