Mamata exhorts people to badger BJP leaders on Central funds issue

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West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has been criticising the Centre over the alleged ‘reluctance’ to release dues to the state, on Wednesday appealed to the people to organise a mass movement against the BJP and demand the immediate release of the funds.

“When you meet BJP leaders in your localities, raise the demands for the release of Central dues to the state. Tell them to seek votes only after ensuring that the Central dues on accounts of ICDS and MGNREGA,” she said, while addressing a public rally in West Midnapore district on Wednesday afternoon.

The chief minister also said that the women have to come to the forefront in this unique movement. “I appeal to the women to come to the forefront. We all will have to come together,” the chief minister said.

She also repeated her past allegations that a massive amount of Rs 92,000 crore is due to the state from the Union government under various schemes like ICDS and MGNREGA among others. “The Union government is supposed to give a share of the money it raises from the states as tax to the state governments concerned. But in the case of West Bengal, the Union government is not paying us our legitimate dues,” Mamata Banerjee said.

Speaking on the occasion, she also cautioned a section of her own party leaders that any high-handed attitude on their part or any negligence in public service will lead to their rejection by the masses. “Remember, one can be a leader only through his public service. The people will easily identify those leaders who are neglecting public service,” the chief minister said.

Describing the current Union government as the “killer government”, the chief minister said that the Central rulers have made the lives of people miserable by resorting to massive increases in the prices of essential commodities like petrol, diesel, cooking gas and even life-saving medicines.

BJP spokesman Shamik Bhattacharya said the chief minister by calling people to badger BJP leaders is actually asking people to take law in their hands. “This state government does not care for the rule of the land,” he said.

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