West Bengal state Bharatiya Janata Party President Dilip Ghosh on Sunday said his party workers could have dragged West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee away by her hair for criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi on demonetisation in Delhi, if they wanted to. “When Mamata [Banerjee] was doing her theatrics in Delhi, we could have dragged her away by her hair if we wanted to. Our police is there, but we didn’t do it. A CM using such words for the PM is not right,” Ghosh said. Criticising the Centre, Banerjee had tweeted, “The most corrupt people are talking about removing corruption”.
The West Bengal chief minister had said demonetisation has led to a complete demolition of the Indian economy. “The arrogant and destructive attitude of this Government is trying to destroy the world’s largest democracy,” she had said. Banerjee has been vocal about her opposition to the “draconian decision” to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, which Modi had said was aimed to crackdown on black money and corruption.
Ghosh’s remarks were strongly criticised by the Trinamool Congress, who said the saffron party was desperately trying to silence the Opposition’s voice. “The BJP cannot fight Mamata Banerjee on policy, good governance and her principled stand on demonetisation on behalf of millions who are affected,” the ruling party in West Bengal said in a statement.
Trinamool legislator Derek O’Brien decried Ghosh’s comments as a ‘new low in politics’. He accused Ghosh of making ‘dangerous, threatening, false and personal allegations against Mamata Banerjee’. Party General Secretary Partha Chatterjee said the remarks show that he is mentally unstable. “We are not taking it lightly. We strongly condemn the language used by him,” said Chatterjee.
The Trinamool Congress will stage a state-wide protest from December 14-16 against the Centre’s move to denotify Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes. Meanwhile, the BJP has started a drive in the state to educate its workers on e-banking and cashless transactions, reported The Times of India. “We have prepared a few teams of two or three experienced IT guys. They are touring districts and conducting workshops both for our party workers and locals,” Ghosh told the daily. The move is being seen as a step to counter the state ruling party’s protests.