West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday lashed out at Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah for targeting her family members and calling Bengal “Kangal (poor) Bangla”. She alleged that the BJP is targetting her nephew and her party’s Diamond Harbour Lok Sabha candidate Abhishek Banerjee to “start a riot” in the area.
“It is Modi’s plan to start a riot at Diamond Harbour. He is ready to splurge any amount for this purpose,” she said at a rally in Metiabruz under Diamond Harbour constituency.
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“A lot of my family members are in politics but do not come before the public. Only one person (Abhishek) has come into active politics and they are jealous of him. What wrong has he done? Everytime they come here, they target him. Narendra Modi should first talk about his wife and whether he takes care of her. Do you look after your wife? If he cannot take care of his wife, then how would he know what a family means,” she added.
Coming down heavily on Shah for calling Bengal “Kangal” (poor), she said, “One BJP leader today said Mamata Banerjee has turned Bengal into Kangal Bangla. Does he know the meaning of Kangal? He is a matha mota (fat-head) leader who is also the right hand of Modi. He is half-literate and all he knows is how to incite a riot. I will lay down my life if needed but I won’t allow any riot here.”
Reacting to Shah’s comments, TMC leader and Rajya Sabha member Derek O’brien tweeted, “Puke-worthy Shah had the audacity to use the term Kangal Bangla today at a rally. The people of Bengal will give him and Modi a fitting reply in Phase 7… He is ignoramus about Bengal. Knows nothing about the state… And yet comes to beg for votes.”
The CM also reiterated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the greatest “danger to the country”. “Where will the country go if Narendra Modi comes to power again? He is the greatest danger to the country. West Bengal is a place where all religions co-exist,” she said.
Banerjee further lambasted the BJP for holding her responsible for minority appeasement in West Bengal. “BJP leaders accuse me of appeasing the Muslims. What do you mean by appeasement? The Muslims are also people of the state. What nasty politics is the BJP doing?” Banerjee asked.
Earlier in the day, the chief minister blamed the central government for going back on its words to construct the Tajpur port. “We have also decided to mobilise Rs 1000 crore in the next three to four years to build a bridge over Muriganga river in Gangasagar for which detailed project report has to be made. The Centre did not construct this bridge despite repeated requests. They have also gone back on its words to construct deep sea Tajpur port,” she added.