Jhargram: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday attacked West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for allegedly confronting a group of purported BJP supporters for chanting “Jai Shri Ram” and claimed that she was putting innocent people in jail for hailing Lord Ram.
A video circulated on Whatsapp on May 4 showed Banerjee stepping out of her vehicle in a bid to confront a group of people chanting “Jai Shri Ram”, a chant frequently used by the leaders and workers of the saffron party.
Upon seeing Banerjee’s convoy stop, the people started fleeing but she dared them to come back and alleged that some of them were using abusive language against her. Four persons were subsequently arrested from the area.
IANS has not verified the content of the video.
“I want to say to the people of entire West Bengal, ‘Jai Shri Ram’. I want to say it especially to Mamata didi. Didi has started to put people in jail for chanting ‘Jai Shri Ram’. So I thought that I should also say ‘Jai Shri Ram’ to her directly. May be she would put me in jail as well,” Modi said at an election rally in Jhargram district, evoking loud cheer from the crowd.
“If she puts me in jail, I will at least be able to serve the innocent people whom she has imprisoned. Is it a crime to hail Lord Ram in West Bengal? In front of Ram, the pride of many people have been shattered. How long will you (Banerjee) hold on to you pride,” he asked.
Modi also took pot shots at CPI-M General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, who recently courted controversy by saying that epics like the Ramayana and the Mahabharata showed that “even Hindus could be violent”.
“The approach of the communists is still understandable. Theirs is a party based on foreign principals and ideologies. That’s why they do not pay respect to either Ram or Sita attached to their names. They insult Ramayana and Mahabharata. It has become a fashion for them,” Modi said, making an obvious reference to Yechury’s first name.
Flaying Banerjee for claiming that BJP had made Lord Ram its “polling agent” in the Lok Sabha elections, Modi said that Ram was a part of the people’s lives in this country.
“She (Banerjee) said the BJP has made Ram a polling agent. I want to tell her clearly that Ram is in our veins, in our culture. Ram is our inspiration. That’s why our party is based on nationalism,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister also accused the Trinamool Congress of using agents in every sector to take bribes and extort money from the people of the state.
“Didi has introduced the mal-practice of agents. Not a single work in Bengal can be completed without the interference of Trinamool agents,” Modi said.