Will fight LS polls alone in Bengal: Mamata

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Kolkata, July 21 (IANS) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Saturday her Trinamool Congress would fight the 2019 General elections alone in West Bnegal and warned the Congress and the Left “not to join hands with the BJP” in the state while seeking her support at the Centre.

Addressing the party’s Martyr’s Day rally here, she said: “Our resolve in this rally is that we will win all of 42 Lok Sabha seats in Bengal in 2019.”

She said: “The Congress and the Left are helping the BJP to thrive in Bengal, while seeking our support in Delhi. They should think twice. We do not need their support in Bengal. We will fight alone. But they should remember that we support them in Delhi.”

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Referring to her principal adversaries in the state, she asked: “How is it that they have one ideology in Bengal and another in Delhi? Didn’t the Congress, CPI-M and BJP fight (the recent rural polls) together?”

The Trinamool supremo said her party has not forgotten the atrocities committed on its supporters during the Left Front regime. “We would thus continue to fight the CPI-M in the state,” she said.

Accusing the BJP of distributing cash among the people in Bengal to buy their votes, Banerjee warned that it was impossible for the BJP to lure all the 10 crore people of the state.

“I did a survey in a Gram Sabha in (northern) Bengal’s Alipurduar and found that BJP gave Rs 1,000 and other freebees to each of the families there and managed to buy 100 votes. But they should keep in mind that it is not possible to buy out 10 crore voters of Bengal,” she said.

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Taking a dig at BJP for the canopy collapse during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Bengal’s Midnapore last week, Banerjee said: “Those who cannot even construct a pandal, talk of nation-building.”

Pillorying the BJP for trying to establish its control everywhere, she said even Nobel laureate and economist Amartya Sen was removed as chancellor of Nalanda University.

The Bengal Chief Minister also downplayed BJP’s victory in Tripura earlier this year, saying it could manipulate voters as it is a very small state in terms of size and population, with the ruling CPI-M led Left Front unable to offer any resistance.

In a swipe at BJP’s Bengal chief Dilip Ghosh for his extreme renarks, she said the party should rein in its leaders from resorting to “Talibani fundamentalism”.

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“He talks about lynching, beating up the police, attacking our activists and instigates people to indulge in arson,” she said.

–IANS

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