Asansol, April 7 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday accused West Bengal’s ruling Trinamool Congress of indulging in “scientific corruption”, and ridiculed the Congress and the Left for stitching up an alliance in the state “despite their ideological differences” and animosity towards each other in Kerala.
“When I was young, the Leftists used to win elections in Bengal continuously. When we asked people how they keep on winning, the wiser ones would tell us that the Left wins through scientific rigging.
“Now in didi’s (elder sister, as Mamata Banerjee is affectionately called) regime, I see scientific corruption,” the prime minister said addressing an election rally in this industrial town – about 200 kilometers from Kolkata – in Burdwan district.
Elaborating, Modi said awarding of tenders for government jobs were decided even before they were floated.
Refering to the Vivekananda flyover that collapsed in north Kolkata on March 31, he said: “That busted the corruption racket.”
On the profusion of syndicates that supply materials for buildings or other projects and are regarded as a menace for intimidating individuals and companies carrying out some constructions, Modi alleged the syndicates were also linked to the coal mafiosi.
“Why do the syndicates have links to the coal mafiosi? What are the links between syndicates and those looting coal?” he asked.
The prime minister blamed the erstwhile Left Front government for starting the syndicates, and said the Trinamool has helped their growth.
Modi said before the last Lok Sabha election he had promised not to spare those who have messed around with the country’s coal resources.
Refering to the four year prison terms given to two directors of Jharkhand Ispat Pvt. Ltd convicted of criminal conspiracy and cheating in bagging a coal block, Modi said more people would face punishment in the coming days.
He expanded TMC (abbreviation of Trinamool Congress) as Terror, Maut (death) and Corruption, and said Banerjee has now “adjusted to corruption”.
“Shouldn’t you teach a lesson to didi? There was time when if any of her partymen indulged in corruption, she used to leave the seat of power in disgust. Earlier whew as even prepared to take blows of batons during her anti-graft protests.
“But today, despite the Narada sting footage scandal that showed wads of cash being given did didi take any steps? This shows Mamata has adjusted to corruption. Now didi finds no fault with corruption,” he said.
Modi said the coming state assembly polls have given a good opportunity to “throw out these corrupt people from politics”.
He also complained about the “atmosphere of terror” prevailing in the state, and said “attempts were made to finish off all opponents”.
“This does not reflect faith in democracy.”
On the Congress-LF alliance, the prime minister urged people to listen to video footages of the abuses that the Congress leaders hurled at the Left in West Bengal five years back.
The prime minister refered to the long history of bitterness and political rivalry between the two forces, and expressed surprise over the Congress “clinging to the coattails of the Left” in Bengal.
Modi said that the Congress government at the centre had invoked the constitution’s article 356 in 1959 to dismiss the Communist-led government under E. M. S. Namboodiripad – the first non-Congress chief minister in independent India.
Describing the Congress-Left tie-up as a “betrayal” of the people, he said: “If you have ideological differences, then the differences should be there both in Kerala and Bengal.
“But see the magic. In Kerala the Congress are abusing the Communists, fighting them, and in Bengal they are with the Left. I don’t understand this kushti (wrestling) in Kerala, and the dosti (friendship) in Bengal. Can you depend on such people? Are they not hoodwinking you?” he asked.