Kolkata, Sep 12: BJP president Amit Shah accused West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of pursuing politics of appeasement and alleged that central funds were being "siphoned off" by syndicates run by the ruling Trinamool Congress in the state.
Criticising the state government for its decision to stop immersion of Durga idol on October 1 as Muharram falls on the same day, he said that in other parts of the country, processions of various religions were taken out on the same day. It had happened here too earlier, he said and wondered why the people have to knock the court's door now to celebrate Durga Puja. He also said the people are not allowed to celebrate Saraswati Puja in some places in the state.
Such decisions are not taken in view of Hindu-Muslim confrontation, but because of appeasement and vote bank politics, Shah said during an interaction here with the intellectuals.
Shah's comment came in the backdrop of Banerjee's announcement last month that there would not be any immersion of Durga idols on October 1. The Trinamool Congress hit back saying the "BJP has resorted to campaign to defame its government" as it has failed to counter it politically.
TMC secretary general and minister Partha Chatterjee said that West Bengal topped in small and medium-scale industries and is in the forefront in implementation of 100 days work. Its 'Kanyashree' project has earned the laurels globally, he said. The BJP did not like this and was attacking Mamata Banerjee on the issue of violence, Chatterjee said. "What happened in the name of Ram Rahim (in Haryana)? How many people were killed in one day? How much property was damaged there?" he asked. The TMC leader also accused the Modi government of "discriminating" against the state on flood relief. "It only helped Assam and Bihar," he said.
On the corruption charge levelled by Shah against the TMC, Chatterjee said, "Those who are at the top in corruption are pointing finger at others." Referring to Shah's advice to BJP workers to counter violence allegedly by the TMC through a mass movement, Chatterjee said that he (Shah) has provoked his party workers to indulge in violence. This also meant that the BJP does not have faith in democracy, he said.
The BJP president said that huge amounts of central funds were being given to the state government and sought to know where it had gone. Mamata Banerjee has to answer where was the money which was given by the central government, he said. Shah also questioned the TMC on the issue of industrial growth as well as the bomb blasts and the fake currency trade in the state.