Upset by ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans at PM Modi’s Bengal event, Mamata Banerjee refuses to go on stage
Attempts by Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnav and West Bengal Governor CV Ananda Bose to pacify the chief minister did not succeed in persuading her.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday refused to come on stage during the inauguration of the Vande Bharat Express at the Howrah railway station after supporters of the Bharatiya Janata Party shouted “Jai Shri Ram” slogans, PTI reported.
Upset by the loud sloganeering, the Trinamool Congress chief remained seated on a chair in the audience instead. Attempts by Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnav and West Bengal Governor CV Ananda Bose to pacify Banerjee were not successful in persuading her, according to the news agency.
Banerjee also thought about leaving the venue and complained about the “Jai Shri Ram” slogans to the governor, The Indian Express reported.
Last year, she had refused to speak at an event in Kolkata on the occasion of freedom fighter Subhas Chandra Bose’s 125th birth anniversary after “Jai Shri Ram” slogans were chanted when she rose to address the gathering. Trinamool Congress leaders had alleged that BJP supporters shouted the slogan to heckle and humiliate Banerjee.
West Bengal’s first Vande Bharat Express, connecting Howrah and New Jalpaiguri, was virtually inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday after he performed the last rites of his mother Heeraben Modi. She died in the early hours of Friday.
Once Modi appeared virtually to flag off the semi-high-speed train, Banerjee regained her composure.
“Today is a sad day for you personally,” the Trinamool Congress leader told him. “It is a great loss of your personal life. May god give you strength and bless you...I convey my gratitude to you for being present here virtually.”