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Scathing attack: Mamata accuses BJP of ruining democracy

By Madhuri Adnal
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    Kolkata, Aug 25: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee made a scathing attack on the BJP, holding it responsible for the "total anarchy" prevailing in India and questioned whether the saffron party had the right to decide what people should eat.

    West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee

    She also accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of "ruining" democracy in the country by forcing its choice on others, besides creating a division among the people on the basis of religion.

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    "We are living in total anarchy. The BJP is deciding which agencies will raid whose place. They are deciding which television channel will be closed down and which one will be seen by the people," Banerjee told reporters at the state secretariat.

    The Trinamool Congress chief was referring to the Income Tax raids at the residence and office of an official of Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy.

    "They are also deciding on which reporter will be sacked and who will retain his job. What they are doing in the country does not happen in any democracy," she alleged.

    Banerjee, who is trying to rally the opposition to take on the BJP in the next year's general elections, also accused the saffron party of "purchasing media houses" and influencing which news would be telecast.

    "We are noticing everything. But the main problem is that they (the BJP) have bought the television channels. Though at regional level there is some scope but at the national level the entire media have been purchased.

    "We have several examples of that, you can agree or disagree.They are deciding what type of news will be telecast," she alleged.

    Referring to the murder of Gauri Lankesh, Banerjee said the editor was killed only because she had spoken on an issue and it was not liked by the BJP.

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    "Because Gauri Lankesh had talked about something, some people belonging to some religious terrorist outfit were employed to remove her... All this information is coming out now. Why will this happen in our country," she asked.

    She questioned whether the BJP had the right to decide what people should eat and their choice of meat.

    "They (The BJP) have no right to direct anybody what to eat and what not to eat. You cannot force your choice on others. This is not right. Every person has their own right," she said apparently referring to the controversy over beef.

    "There could be political or ideological differences. But this is not done. This is not our country. We have a tradition of loving everybody, but whatever is going on is not right. I believe the public will give its reply," she said.

    Stressing that though religions were separate, festivals were for all, the Trinamool Congress chief said the BJP did not have the right to force their choice on others.

    She claimed she had information that several people were injured in police firing in Jharkhand during the Id-ul-Zuha celebrations and they were undergoing treatment at West Bengal hospitals.

    "What right the BJP has to randomly fire on the people of another community only because you are running the central government. For what reason," Banerjee questioned.

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