WB Congress quits state government, Mamata slams Centre

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Kolkata, Sep 22: The West Bengal Congress withdrew from the Mamata Banerjee-led government on Saturday. Six ministers of the party tendered their resignation to the chief minister on Saturday. The state Congress took the decision after the Trinhamool Congress (TMC) pulled out of the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre over raising prices of diesel, putting cap on subsidised LPG cylinders and allowing foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail.

The state Congress, however, cited local issues like deteriorating law and order situation in Bengal and the growing crime against women as the main reasons for pulling out of the government. The decision, however, does not threaten the state government for the TMC has a comfortable majority.

Leaders like Adhir Chowdhury, the MP from Berhampore who is known for his strong anti-Mamata stands, said the pull-out will work in favour of the state Congress. Senior state Congress leader Om Prakash also requested Congress president Sonia Gandhi to give ministerial berths to at least three Congress Mps from West Bengal. According to the Congress leadership, it was a good opportunity to boost the state Congress.

Meanwhile on saturday, Mamata Banerjee launched an attack on the Centre, saying she would never bow before the arrogant power-holders. While speaking at a function here, Mamata said Maa, Mati, Manush (mother, earth and people) are the assets of India's democracy and she would only bow before them and not the arrogant power-holders.

TMC ministers formally resigned from the central government on Friday as a protest against the decision to undertake eeconomic reforms.

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