April 10, 2012
Learning from our mistakes … we are moving ahead: Mamata
Learning from our mistakes… we are moving ahead. Support us as we build a new BENGAL.
People learn through their experiences. This is called Trial & Error method. The Trinamool has been in power for only 10 months. The CPI (M), here in power for the last 34 years, has ruined the system. Even today I do not see myself as just Chief Minister. I think I am a representative of the Common People. I have been working for the last 10 months for the interests of the Common People. In the last 10 months we have done so much work, which was not done in the last 34 years. Through the news media I appeal to all people of the state, rich or poor, belonging to all religions, all classes: let us forget our differences and build a new BENGAL. We need the support of all of you. `
– Ms. Mamata Banerjee, 10.04.2012
· There have been allegations against you that you are very “hyper”… you lose your temper…
A. If I were “hyper” I wouldn’t have had the patience to dethrone a power like CPI (M) after such a long fight. There was a time when I was a lone MP from Trinamool. In the course of time the Trinamool family has become bigger. Now we have many members, both in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. But again if somebody conspires against us, making false allegations, yes, that makes me angry…
· You are not responsible for either the Park St. case or the Hatibagan fire. Why did you react then? In Delhi there are at least three to four rapes a day but Sheela Dixit never comments.
A. I am least bothered about what others say. I do not want to be an irresponsible Chief Minister. I am not thick skinned. Whenever there is a rape, fire or even a road accident, I am badly affected. I always want that none of the people of the state must suffer. What can I do if I am affected when I come to know that a father is unable to buy school books for his child or a mother is not able to get her daughter married?
· Shouldn’t you be devoid of emotions while running a Government?
A. I do not think so. It is not that we are not taking any decisions. Problems are aplenty. We have been regularly calling ministers and officers to the Secretariat and taking decisions. Projects are being materialized in both the rural and urban areas. Do you keep account of those?
· You are saying that work is being done, but where is industry? All the industries are going away.
A. This didn’t happen in a day. There is no clash between industry and agriculture. Such a situation materialized during the Singur–Nandigram incidents. That is why we are being very careful. After coming to power, the first thing we have tried to do is to keep farmers secure. That does not mean that there will be no heavy industries in the state; that does not mean that we do not want investments. Please wait. We are trying to move forward, slowly, maintaining the equilibrium. We do not want to rush. We want to create the right environment for heavy industry. We need the support of the common people. We want to spread this news through the news media.
· You are looking for the help of news media, but there have been allegations that you are trying to take away the freedom of the press…
A. I am all for free press. Newspapers are the biggest pillars of democracy. Nobody knows it better than I. There will be no interference in the freedom of journalists and newspapers. That is all I can say.
· There has been a recent debate about Chit Funds. What would be your comment? Do you support this business…?
A. I am not connected with this business. These are the affairs of the Central Government. If Chit Funds are doing illegal business, then the Centre will take requisite steps. I have nothing to say regarding this. If the Centre suggests that the State does something regarding this business, we will consider. Incidentally, this Chit Fund business did not start recently. It started when Congress was in power in the Centre and CPI (M) in the State. This is a private business which has no connection with Trinamool and the State Government.
· Are you going to confront the UPA Government or Congress?
A. Why should I? We do not want to go into any confrontation with either the UPA or the Congress, by ourselves. I have shown them our support and will not betray them. But, for the benefit of the people of West Bengal, I have to go on fighting. It is all for the sake of Maa, Mati, Manush.
· Are you not going against the rich while representing Maa, Mati, Manush?
A. Not really. It is true that my priority lies with Maa, Mati, Manush. The rich are also a part of society. It is the Communists who speak of doing away with the rich. We have always been for all. That is Democracy. The industrialists and the upper class have been supporting me since I was the Union Railway Minister, and even now.
(The Interview of Chief Minister Ms. Mamata Banerjee published in Ananda Bazar Patrika dated 10.04.12)