Union Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur on Monday slammed the Trinamool Congress (TMC) for describing BJP leaders and his ministerial colleagues as “outsiders”. The ruling party has repeatedly accused the BJP of deploying ”outsiders” to fight the upcoming state elections.
Wondering if it was a crime for a Union minister to visit West Bengal, Thakur told reporters, “If a minister of the Indian government coming to West Bengal is termed an outsider, then I want to ask that people from which place are considered insiders. Is it a crime for a Union minister to visit the state? Is it a crime that people are coming to this state to take it to new heights as people from Bengal have done so across the nation? What do they mean by an outsider? Bengal is an important part of the country. We have to question this kind of thought process that is growing in the state.”
The minister was here to attend a few events, and visit ailing BCCI president and former India men’s cricket captain Sourav Ganguly at a city hospital. He said people from all parts of India had settled in the state and contributed to its progress.
At a conference on “Economic Resurgence of West Bengal — Road Ahead” at the Indian Council for Cultural Research (ICCR), Thakur slammed the Mamata Banerjee government for failing to create an investor-friendly environment in the state. His Cabinet colleague Babul Supriyo, BJP MP Swapan Dasgupta, and party leader Mukul Roy were among those present at the event.
“Who will come to Bengal to invest if an atmosphere of fear prevails here? A potential investor first looks at the law-and-order situation of the place before making any investment. He wants to make sure his investment is safe and secured. Unfortunately, law and order here have completely collapsed. Only industries of death, violence and corruption have flourished under the Mamata Banerjee government. Only Saradha, Narada and Rose Valley have flourished,” said the minister.
He added, “If you have to end the corruption and violence here then you have to remove the TMC from power. The Narendra Modi government granted more funds to Mamata Banerjee government than the UPA-II government. But the state continuously opposed the Centre’s schemes and policies. It chose the path of confrontation at the cost of poor people not getting benefits of the Centre’s schemes. You now have to change the prevailing climate in Bengal. You have to create an investor-friendly and people-friendly climate. For that, you have to give the Narendra Modi government a chance. Only a Modi government here and a Modi government at the Centre will create a ‘Sonar Bangla [Golden Bengal]’.”
Ridiculing Thakur, TMC MP Saugata Roy said, “No one takes him seriously anymore. His comments ‘goli maro [shoot]’ was condemned in Parliament. He is from Himachal Pradesh. What is he doing in Bengal? Why is he not visiting his own constituency, which has witnessed snowfall recently? They are indeed outsiders. Has the BJP no leader in Bengal? Then why do they need people like Anurag Thakur here?”
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines