We won’t let them build a single detention camp in Bengal: Mamata Banerjee

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today led a protest march against CAA, NRC and NPR in Darjeeling. This is the latest of several such protests led by her. After the march, she addressed a large gathering, attended also by those who participated in the march.

Highlights of her speech:

I am assuring all the communities in the Hills there there’s nothing to be scared of regarding NRC, NPR and CAA.

We all are citizens. We live together. We may have different languages, but we are all Indians.

Why did you remove one lakh Gorkha names from the Assam NRC list? We will fight for it together. Why do we have to prove our citizenship even after 73 years of independence?

We have voted for all Prime Ministers including Modi. We are citizens. We have the right to vote.

The Home Minister is giving big talk. Only our State has postponed NPR.

They are asking for birth certificates of our parents. None of us have those. Now they are saying that those certificates are not mandatory. Then why did you keep that point in the NPR form?

They will make you foreigners for a few years. Then they will grab your properties and jobs.

Why did you not implement this in Tripura? Because that is a BJP-ruled State. They are not talking about jobs. But they are selling off BSNL, Ordnance factories, Air India etc.

They are diverting attention from the pathetic economic condition of the country.

They are calling us Pakistanis if we raise our voices. Why should we be Pakistanis? We are all Hindustanis.

They have snatched blankets from the women protesting in Lucknow in this cold.

When I saw that they are snatching away the rights of the people of Darjeeling, I came here immediately. They are saying you will get citizenship online. Everything is a lie.

You all are voters, involved in business or service-holders. Doing jobs is your right. No one can snatch them away.
We are with you. Continue this movement until they withdraw NRC and CAA.

This is the question of our right, respect and land. We won’t let them drive away a single person.

They have killed many people. They want to keep only BJP people in the country and drive away all good people.

If anyone asks for any document, don’t show them. Only enlist your name in the Voters’ List.

We won’t let them build a single detention camp in Bengal.

Didi led an anti-CAA protest march in Hills today

Today, Mamata Banerjee led a 4-km-long protest march in Darjeeling hills against the new citizenship law. The rally began at Bhanu Bhakta Bhavan near Mall in Darjeeling and concluded in the Chowkbazar area.. For the last few weeks, Didi has been leading protests across the State against this unconstitutional law.

Several protest marches have been held in Kolkata, led by Mamata Banerjee. Trinamool Chhatra Parishad and Trinamool Mahila Congress have held sit-in demonstrations as well. 

Bangla is the only State to boycott the meeting on NPR called by the Union Government. At the inauguration of the Uttarbanga Utsav too she had said that there will be no NPR and CAA in Bangla. She assured the people that she would guard them 365 days a year.


Modi Govt following ‘divide and rule’ policy: Didi

Bangla Chief Minister and Trinamool Chairperson, Mamata Banerjee, speaks about her views on CAA, NRC, NPR, the situation in Kashmir and the misinformation campaign by BJP.

Here are excerpts from the interview:

Q: The Prime Minister recently visited Belur Math where he said that the Opposition was misleading people on CAA

Didi: The Prime Minister went to Belur Math on a personal visit. We have great regard for Ramakrishna Mission. We have never seen anyone use the stage for political speeches. I am thankful to the monks of Ramakrishna Mission for protesting against it.

Instead of paying respect to Swami Vivekananda ji, he did a mischievous thing – he did political propaganda. We don’t agree with his political vision. He wants to fulfill his political agenda. We don’t agree with that. In parliamentary committee, we opposed this from the beginning.

Everyone with documents like the voter ID card, PAN card, Aadhaar card, passport etc are citizens of the country. If the Opposition is misleading the people, why are people protesting in BJP-ruled States? Why are States like Assam against NRC? We support their protests. Actually, BJP is misleading the people.

They are following a divide-and-rule policy through CAA. It depends on their choice. They are in power. They must ensure ‘roti-kapda-makaan’ and not promote politics of hate. This policy is being criticised worldwide. We love our country and he is dividing the country.

The country’s economy is a disaster now. Prices are skyrocketing, unemployment is rising, industries are shutting down. Walmart is closing down their chapter in India. Instead of giving attention to these problems, they are trying to discriminate (among people).

Swami Vivekananda never said divide the country. He worked for the downtrodden people. He said unity is strength and weakness is death. Divide and rule is BJP’s manifesto, their agenda and they want everyone to follow them. This will destroy the secular fabric of the country.

Q: So, you are opposing CAA, NRC, NPR

Didi: At first we thought NPR is related to census. But now we know it is connected to NRC. There is no convention or provision that discriminates among refugees. India is a vast country, with so many languages, cultures. There are even different dialects in Bengali in every district. Even if we do not understand their language, we respect and love them. That’s the beauty of our country.

Q: So, you are saying refugees must not be discriminated against

Didi: It is not a matter of refugees. People will have to surrender their citizenship for five years. Everything will be lost. There are many discrepancies. Why have they not included Tamil refugees from Sri Lanka? It is our neighbouring country.

Q: So, you are saying NRC is anti-Bengali

Didi: Obviously it is anti-Bengali. But most importantly, it is anti-India. You can see how Bengali migrant workers are being treated in other States. Some of them were brutally murdered in Kashmir. So many migrants work in Bengal. We do not discriminate among them. How can you divide them like this?

Q: Centre claims there is normalcy in Kashmir

Didi: Kashmir is our heart. We love Kashmir. If the situation is normal, why are so many leaders under house arrest for such a long time? Why is there internet shutdown? People are suffering. Problems can be solved by taking people into confidence. But if you bulldoze your views on others, there will be issues.

Words and vision are the credibility of a politician. Your character is your credibility. Your character is your credential.

Kashmiris should have been taken into confidence. Why were political parties not called for a meeting? I want to visit Kashmir and visit Farooq (Abdullah) Ji, Mehbooba (Mufti), Omar (Abdullah). I don’t want to go as a Chief Minister but as an individual, as the Chairperson of All India Trinamool Congress. Foreign dignitaries are welcome (in Kashmir) but Indians cannot go. That is the problem. I want to go and see how Kashmiri brothers and sisters are.

Our party’s delegation is not allowed in Assam, Lucknow, Kashmir. This is the condition.

Q: Political dynamics has changed. Trinamool, DMK, Shiv Sena, SP, BSP didn’t attend the meeting (in New Delhi). The message is loud and clear – regional parties want to play on their own terms

Didi: Regional parties are feeling isolated. Why local leaders in Tamil Nadu are blaming Stalin? Shiv Sena is in a government with them, but they are also feeling isolated. Same with Arvind Kejriwal. Only meetings won’t help. This is a public movement. Let everyone carry on the protests in their own way.

We are all together.

Q: Do you mean the Congress is unreliable?

Didi: I don’t have any comments. Words are silver and silence is golden

Q: BJP accuses Trinamool of appeasement politics. In 2005, you raised your voice against illegal immigration but now you have changed your stand

Didi: BJP is misinforming, misleading, disinforming the people. My protest was ‘No ID card, no vote’. Only that can prove the genuineness of voters. Why would one name appear in 50 places? Names of genuine voters were missing. I was fighting for voting rights of genuine voters. For this movement, 13 youth workers were killed in firing by the Left Front Government. Why was I not allowed to speak in the Parliament? What BJP is saying is fabricated. Our movement started in 1991.

Didi pens poem against the unconstitutional CAB and NRC

Mamata Banerjee has penned a poem against the CAB and NRC, undemocratic processes which the Central Government is trying to impose on the country. People across the country are staging protests against them.

Today, she addressed a public meeting at Rani Rashmoni Avenue in Kolkata. Tomorrow she will address another public meeting at Park Circus.

At all the meetings, the common slogan was ‘No NRC, No CAB’, coined by Mamata Banerjee herself. She assured everybody that neither CAB nor NRC would be allowed in Bangla and that Trinamool will continue the fight against them.

As a mark of protest, she has coined a poem titled ‘Citizens’.


All of us
On the streets
On the highways
Marching together
Raising our voice
Fighting oppression
Victory belongs to… us.

North Bengal should be ready to give befitting answer: Didi on NRC

“North Bengal should be ready to give a befitting answer. We don’t want NRC. We don’t want to create divide among people and communities using the Citizens Amendment Act. We want all to coexist in peace without any division and without any violence. There is nothing to worry, nothing to get frustrated over. There will be no NRC,” stated Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Siliguri while inaugurating a Kali Puja on Thursday.

The CM also said, “Bangla never says we will allow this festival and won’t allow that festival. Hindu-Muslim-Christian-Sikh-Parsi-Jain-Gorkha-Bengali-Rajbanshi – we all coexist here in peace and harmony. People of all faiths and backgrounds come together to celebrate festivals.”

The CM, who is on a tour of North Bengal, returned from Kurseong to the plains on Thursday, where she inaugurated the Kali Puja organised by Biplab Smriti Athletic Club in Pradhan Nagar, Siliguri. Earlier during the day, the Chief Minister visited the Netaji Museum at Giddepahar on the fringes of Kurseong for the first time.

After garlanding the bust of Netaji, Banerjee said while talking to media persons: “The condition of the building was very bad. In 2017 we had thoroughly renovated it keeping the heritage character of the house. The house has been declared a heritage too. I have come to see if the renovation work has been done properly.”

No detention centre to come up in Bengal: Mamata Banerjee

Bangla Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday ruled out any possibility of detention centres coming up in West Bengal on the lines of such camps for keeping illegal foreigners being set up in states like Assam and Karnataka.

“I say with all responsibility in the presence of all government officers that we have no plans to undertake any NRC (National Register for Citizens) exercise in our state.
“So the question of constructing any detention camp does not arise. It can only come up if we construct it,” she said addressing an administrative meeting at Uttarkanya – the North Bengal branch secretariat of the state government near Siliguri.

The Chief Minister said the NRC exercise could be undertaken in Assam as it was part of the Assam accord, 1985.

The CM said the NRC would not happen in Bengal as “we run the government here”.
“They could carry out such an exercise in Assam, as the matter was a part of the Assam Accord of 1985, and because the state has a BJP government. In this state, we run the government.”
She also said the CAB, if passed, would render people as foreigners for six years. “So Indians, and particularly Bengalis, will become foreigners for six years. What will you do with such people for six years? And then, what will happen?” she said.

Trinamool organises protests across Bangla against NRC

All India Trinamool Congress organised rallies and street corner meetings at various places in the State, as part of “mass protests” against the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the “divisive” politics of the BJP. These protests were carried out on September 7 and 8.

Carrying posters and placards in several districts, Trinamool supporters shouted slogans against the BJP-led government and demanded immediate repeal of the NRC in Assam.

“Protest rallies were organised in various parts of the state yesterday and today. Our party workers have vowed not to allow NRC in Bengal. Locals, too, joined in,” AITC Secretary General Partha Chatterjee said.

“Party cadres have vowed that they can sacrifice their lives but would never allow division of Bengal,” senior party leader and minister Tapan Dasgupta said.

Trinamool Chairperson is also going to participate in a mega rally against NRC on September 12 in north Kolkata.


BJP MP ran away after winning 2014 election: Mamata Banerjee in Darjeeling

Trinamool Chairperson Mamata Banerjee today addressed a public meeting at Darjeeling. She said that the BJP MP ran away after winning in 2014 elections.

Highlights of her speech:

My salute to the Gorkha contingent. They are the pride of the country. They have sacrificed their lives for the country.

It is my humble request to you to cast your vote in favour of GJM-supported Trinamool candidate Amar Singh Rai

I do not come to the Hills only during elections, and run away thereafter. I come here regularly.

In the last seven years, I have come to the Hills more than 100 times

Bimal Gurung supported BJP in the elections. After winning, did SS Ahluwalia come to the Hills?

We had requested the Centre to set up a university in the Hills. They did not. So, we set up the Hill University here

They incite violence and tension in the Hills for political reasons. They don’t want the Hills to prosper

Amar Singh Rai was the MLA of Darjeeling. He is a bhumiputra of the Hills.

We have not brought any candidate from Delhi. They gave a ticket to Ahluwalia, who ran after eating halua.

Their candidate is from Manipur. He will campaign, distribute money and disappear

We set up a committee for industries in Darjeeling. Amar Singh Rai was the Chairman of the committee

We need three-pronged planning for the development of Hills – short-term, mid-term and long-term

Trinamool will play a significant role in the formation of the next government at Centre

Your MP also became a minister at Centre. Did the Hills benefit at all? What did he do for you?

He knew he’d lose from Darjeeling, so he ran away to Bardhaman

Has the BJP President ever visited the Hills by road? Does he know about the local places? He comes via helicopter, gives a speech and goes away

What has the BJP done for the country for five years

We made Kalimpong a new district. An education hub is coming up at Kurseong.

More than 2 crore people lost their jobs in 2017-18. 12,000 farmers committed suicide.

Demonetisation and GST destroyed the economy. Traders and businessmen suffered

They promised to bring back black money from abroad, and deposit Rs 15 lakh in every bank account. Did they do it?

Five years ago he was a chaiwallah. Now he has become chaiwallah. They have not kept their promises

Chowkidar chor hain, jhoota hain, lootera hain.

40 jawans died in Pulwama. He is asking for votes in the names of jawans. The Centre had information from intelligence. It is their responsibility because they did not take any action.

Terrorism has increased by 260% under Modi’s rule. Unemployment is at 45-year high.

In the name of NRC, they want to drive everyone away. Who are they to decide who will stay and who won’t?

Names of 40 lakh people were excluded in the NRC list in Assam. They excluded the names of Gorkhas, Bengalis, Hindus, Muslims, Biharis… everyone.

They brought the Citizenship Amendment Bill. We opposed the Bill in Parliament, because of which it could not be passed

Under this Bill, you will lose your citizenship for five years. If you become a foreigner for five years, what will be your future? It is not certain whether you will get citizenship again.

The country is under threat. Rights and freedom of the people are under threat

Those who raise the voice against the Centre, they send the agencies to intimidate them

Modi made a film on himself; he thinks he is great. A TV channel has been started in his name. They are only doing publicity

In 2014 itself we asked the Centre to include several communities in the Scheduled Tribe list. They did not do it. Now, they are asking votes on this issue

Many tea garden workers suffered during the strike. Many workers do not get salaries on time. Right now, we cannot announce any decision because of the model code of conduct but we will take a humanitarian decision after elections.

We have formed a review committee to look into the matter of giving pattas to long-time residents of tea gardens

We want the identity of Gorkha brothers and sisters to be safeguarded. We want a solution to the issue of Hills

We want bond of friendship and love between Hills and plains.

Trinamool hits the streets to protest against killing of Bengalis in Assam

Five persons were shot dead in Assam’s Bishnoimukh village in Assam. The attack occurred near Dhola-Sadiya bridge in Tinsukia district around 7 PM on Thursday.

After condemning the attack, Bangla Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee questioned if the killings were in retaliation to the National Register of Citizens in the state. Over 40 lakh people face deportation from India as their names were excluded in the final draft of the list published on July 30.

“Terrible news coming out of Assam. We strongly condemn the brutal attack in Tinsukia and the killing of Shyamlal Biswas, Ananta Biswas, Abhinash Biswas, Subodh Das. Is this the outcome of recent NRC development,” Mamata Banerjee said in a statement on Twitter.

“We have no words to express our deep sorrow to the grieving families. The perpetrators must be punished at the very earliest. The fifth victim in Tinsukia … Dhananjay Namashudra,” she added.

All India Trinamool Congress held protest marches across Bangla today to condemn these dastardly murders. A protest march was led by Abhishek Banerjee – MP and National President of Trinamool Youth Congress – from Jadavpur to Hazra.

Highlights of Abhishek Banerjee’s speech:

  • Yesterday we received the news of the brutal murder of 5 Bengalis in Tinsukia (Assam) at 10:30 PM. We had witnessed mass murders in the CPI(M) era. This incident is a stark reminder of those incidents.
  • We were instructed by our leader Mamata Banerjee last night itself from north Bengal at late night. Our workers received the news in the morning. We are thankful to all for this stupendous response in this short span of time.
  • When Afrazul was hacked to death in Rajasthan, Mamata Banerjee had instructed us to organise protests. We have hit the streets again today.
  • This is not a fight between Trinamool and BJP. This is not CPI(M) vs Trinamool. This is a fight to preserve the Bengali culture. This is fight for the right of Bengalis. This fight is against BJP’s politics of oppression and forcible occupation. We will work as per the directions given by Mamata Banerjee.
  • In the 80’s and 90’s, we had seen how CPI(M) used to kill farmers and then sermonise about their welfare. Now we are seeing so-called pro-Hindu BJP killing Hindus. ‘Hindu mere Hindu prem, BJP shame shame.”
  • During Left rule, they used to raise the slogan ‘Inquilab Zindabad’ but discriminated among people based on political leanings. And now, BJP only says ‘Jai Shree Ram’ while fuel prices are skyrocketing.
  • The budget for Beti Bachao Beti Padhao is a meagre Rs 200 crore. And they built a statue worth Rs 3000 crore. On the other hand, they are killing Bengalis in Assam.
  • Many people from other States live in Bengal in peace. They have never been discriminated against. This is the culture of Bengal.
  • Today, many of my minority friends finished their namaz and joined these protests against the brutal murder of ‘Hindus’ in Assam. This is culture of harmony in Bengal.
  • Yesterday we heard reports that ULFA was involved in the incident. Today they have given a statement that they have nothing to do with the incident. Who were those people in police uniform, who murdered those five innocent people?
  • There must be a free and fair probe into this incident. The investigation must be monitored by the Supreme Court.
  • The Chief Minister of Assam must resign. Why are Bengalis committing suicide in Assam? Why was a famous singer attacked for singing a Bengali song in Guwahati?
  • Mamata Banerjee has categorically said NRC will not be implemented in Bengal.
  • Mamata Banerjee inaugurated at least 100 Durga Pujas in Kolkata. Have you seen any single flex by BJP during Sharadotsav? No. Because they believe in north Indian culture, not Bengali culture.
  • More than 100 people died in the queues during demonetisation. Farmers were killed in police firing in Madhya Pradesh. More than 80 children died due to lack of oxygen at a hospital in UP. This is the example of governance by BJP.
  • They are bringing leaders from other States. They have no idea about Bengali culture and dream of ‘capturing Bengal’.
  • We believe in politics of courtesy. But if they try to disrupt peace in Bengal, we will not tolerate it.
  • Let them compete on the basis of facts and figures. Let us compare the progress made by Bengal versus that of Centre.
  • In the coming days, our slogan should be ‘Du hajar unish, BJP finish. BJP hatao, desh bachao’.

Five Bengalis killed in Assam, Trinamool to hold protest marches today

Five persons were shot dead in Assam’s Bishnoimukh village in Assam. The attack occurred near Dhola-Sadiya bridge in Tinsukia district around 7 PM on Thursday.

After condemning the attack, Bangla Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee questioned if the killings were in retaliation to the National Register of Citizens in the state. Over 40 lakh people face deportation from India as their names were excluded in the final draft of the list published on July 30.

“Terrible news coming out of Assam. We strongly condemn the brutal attack in Tinsukia and the killing of Shyamlal Biswas, Ananta Biswas, Abhinash Biswas, Subodh Das. Is this the outcome of recent NRC development,” Mamata Banerjee said in a statement on Twitter.

“We have no words to express our deep sorrow to the grieving families. The perpetrators must be punished at the very earliest. The fifth victim in Tinsukia … Dhananjay Namashudra,” she added.

All India Trinamool Congress is going to hold protest marches across Bangla today to condemn these dastardly murders.