Kolkata: TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee Sunday said that religious leaders and priests were invited to the grand inauguration of the new Parliament building by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but President of India Droupadi Murmu who is the constitutional head of the country, was not.
The TMC national general secretary questioned what was the role of religious leaders in the Parliament.
“You can surely invite them when you visit a temple, but what role do the religious leaders have in the Parliament, they are not members,” the Trinamool Congress MP from Diamond Harbour constituency in West Bengal said.
Addressing an impromptu press conference at Keshpur in West Midnapore district following a roadshow in Garbeta as part of his ‘Nabajowar’ in TMC programme before the panchayat polls in West Bengal, Banerjee claimed that the BJP was trying to win the next elections on the basis of religion.
“He (Prime Minister Modi) gave a slight teaser today on how he wants to run the country in future, that he wants to turn it into an autocracy from a democracy, it is a shameful and sad state of affairs,” Banerjee said.
The TMC MP claimed that when the prime minister was talking of women’s empowerment, agitating women wrestlers were forcibly moved away from a protest they were holding about two kilometres away from the new Parliament building.
He claimed that the President of India was insulted by not being invited to the event.
Banerjee alleged that the Modi government was spending thousands of crores of Rupees on constructions like Central Vista and new Parliament building, which he claimed were avoidable expenses, while “not releasing funds” for over 11 lakh people in Bengal for their basic housing programmes under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana.
“No discussions are held in the Parliament and bills are passed without discussion,” he said.
The TMC national general secretary said that people were suffering owing to high prices of cooking gas, petrol and diesel, which are also leading to increase in the cost of living.
“It is somewhat like Nero, he was playing the flute as Rome was burning,” Banerjee said.
He claimed that the Modi government appeared not to be bothered even though many opposition parties have not attended the inauguration of the new Parliament building.
The TMC MP alleged that the Modi government was punishing Bengal since the BJP lost to the Mamata Banerjee-led party in the 2021 assembly elections.
He said that there is no problem if central agencies like the CBI take action against anyone involved in corrupt practices, but that parameter should be applied for all irrespective of their political affiliation.
He alleged that the BJP has taken in leaders of other parties who were accused of corruption.