KOLKATA: Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Sunday said the BJP’s Bengal poll manifesto suggesting that the state assembly will ratify the Citizenship (Amendment) Act was “misleading” because a state had no role in implementing a central act.
“We also wish to point out that in Assam, while trying to implement this, they had put 17 lakh people, including Bengali-speaking Hindus, in detention camps,” said party MP Saugata Roy in TMC’s first formal reactions to the just-released manifesto.
“The cash benefits promised are all jumla. This Bechu Babu sarkar (a person who sells everything) is copying Trinamool schemes. They have promised Annapurna canteens to provide food for Rs 5, we are running Ma canteens. They have promised to set up a trust for Brahmins, we are already giving them monthly help,” Roy said.
“When they talk of fresh cash benefit schemes, we just want to remind people about their 2014 poll promise of sending Rs 15 lakh to everyone’s bank account,” he added.
The TMC MP also questioned why a Bengal poll manifesto had to be read out in Hindi by a person from Gujarat in a central government institution. “Isn’t it a manifesto for Bengal? Aren’t there enough leaders from Bengal? And why is a political programme being done at EZCC, a central government institution?” he asked. “In contrast, Mamata Banerjee had read out TMC’s poll manifesto from her Kalighat home,” Roy said.
“We also heard about several promises being made for women. If they had been so keen on this, why haven’t such schemes been implemented in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and even Karnataka? We would also like to ask why crimes against women are so high in BJP-governed states. Why is Hathras and Unnao happening?” the MP asked.
The Bengal government was implementing schemes that have been lauded by the UN, he said. “In addition, for several state schemes — including Swasthya Sathi — the biometric card is issued to women. In addition, Mamata Banerjee has also announced a scheme to directly help all women financially. She has already done what she has promised,” he said.
“We have seen they are speaking of stopping illegal infiltration and fencing of international borders. We have been hearing this for the past seven years. International borders are manned by BSF, a central force. Is it an admission that they have not done what they are supposed to do in the first place?” Roy said.
“The manifesto is full of tall promises. They know they do not have to implement it for they will never come to office in Bengal. They are talking of implementing Ayushman Bharat in Bengal. Till date, it has been extended to only 1 crore people in India. Here, Swasthya Sathi is for all 10 crore people in Bengal. They talk of generating employment. See the economic disaster they have created. Mamata Banerjee has promised job opportunities in specific focus areas, in addition to bringing down the unemployment rate by half. When unemployment rates in India rose, in Bengal it had fallen,” he said.