Left corners Mamata over Maoists remark

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New Delhi, Aug 19 (ANI The Communists along with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) attacked Railway Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee in the Rajya Sabha over her remarks on the killing of Maoist leader Cherukuri Rajkumar alias Azad.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Sitaram Yechury asked how a minister in the government could openly support the Maoists.

He said, "If media reports are to be believed, Banerjee has justified what she said about the killing of Maoist leader. She has defied the government agencies and said that the government has indulged in a murder. This is an absolute breach of the authority bestowed upon her as a Cabinet Minister."

"The Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has himself said that Maoist violence is the gravest threat to India's internal security. Can a member of the Union Cabinet openly support the Maoists and patronise the Maoists? Is it permissible? I think it is not," added Yechury.

BJP Spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad also asked Mamata Banerjee on the issue terming the comments of the Railway Minister as unconstitutional.

Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday said that she stood by her statement that it was wrong to kill Maoist leader Cherukuri Rajkumar alias Azad.

"Whatever I said in Lalgarh, I stick to it. In our democratic set up, we always prefer an amicable settlement and a peaceful solution. In a democratic set up we are for amicable and peaceful solution. I have heard the Independence Day speeches of the President and the Prime Minister. They also spoke on the same lines," said Banerjee.

"If they (Maoists) respond to the President's and Prime Minister's appeal it is good for the country. Let the problem be solved through democratic process. It is the government to decide. I have seen only media reports (on Kishenji's statement). Let me cross check all details," she added, referring to Maoist leader Kishenji's statement calling for a three-month ceasefire by both sides and that they have no problem if Banerjee mediates.

On Tuesday, Maoist leader Koteshwar Rao alias Kishenji asked for a three-month ceasefire to commence talks with the government. (ANI)

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