West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said it had not been a correct decision to align with Congress in the 2011 assembly elections and accused the Congress of holding out the threat of the Central Bureau of Investigation "whenever there is a protest against the UPA government".
"It was not a correct decision to ally with the Congress in the assembly election. There is always good result in fighting alone. If the Trinamool Congress had contested alone, it could have done better and got 293 out of 294 seats," Banerjee, the Trinamool Congress supremo told a panchayat election rally in Amtala in South 24 Parganas district on Tuesday.
Trinamool Congress brought down the curtain on the 34-year uninterrupted rule of Left Front after a historic win in West Bengal. The party won 185 seats and the Congress 42 in the 2011 assembly elections.
Both parties fought together in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections and the TMC won 19 and Congress six out of 42 seats. Banerjee has already announced that the TMC would go alone in future elections in Bengal and is contesting the ongoing panchayat polls without any alliance. She alleged that the Congress in Bengal had forged an "unholy alliance" with the Communist Party of India-Marxist and the Bharatiya Janata Party in the panchayat polls.
"Their's is a unholy and unethical alliance. Do not cast a single vote to them. The TMC is depending on the people's grand alliance," she said.
Training her guns on the Centre, Banerjee alleged that the CBI was used by it to browbeat opponents. Accusing the United Progressive Alliance government of pursuing 'anti-people' policies, she said petrol price was hiked repeatedly. "There is a limit to everything. "And, if there is protest against the Centre's anti-people policies, then the threat of CBI comes," she said.
Banerjee said it would have been easier for her if other Opposition parties were also vocal against the Centre's 'anti-people' policies. "But I will continue to protest against it," she said.
Apparently turning to critics of her government over the brutal gang rape of a college student at Kamduni on June 7, she said "Those engaged in a drama in Bengal to Delhi, where were they when Tapasi Malik was brutally killed in Singur, the Nandigram massacre, killing of seven people at Netai and killings of Ananda Margis and the Marichjhapi massacre during the Left Front regime?" She said there was no justice as yet in the killing of Tapasi Malik.
Naming a former CPI-M leader in Singur who was accused in the Tapasi Malik killing case, she said, "Suhrid Dutta was then dubbed by the CPI-M as an asset of the party."
There was a CBI probe into the Nandigram massacre, but justice was still not meted out to the victims, Banerjee said stressing that she wanted perpetrators of the rape to be punished at the earliest. Amid criticism from various quarters including the Opposition and villagers in Kamduni of her government's handling of the incident, she said, "The way they are behaving as if I have committed the rape. Luckily I am a woman."
Stating that her government was for strong action against those who indulged in crimes like rape, she said during the Left Front regime, women could not register complaints in case of crimes against them. "They are able to register their complaints after the Trinamool Congress came to power", Banerjee said.
Alleging that the Congress and CPI-M had received funds from the Saradha chit funds and the money would have to be returned to the duped investors The Bengal CM claimed chit funds were controlled by the Centre, but market regulator SEBI had not taken proper steps against them. She said an anti-chit fund bill had been passed in the state assembly to protect investors and she wanted an early Presidential assent to it. "Why is there a delay? Let the Congress leaders go and ask the Centre," she said.
Banerjee accused the Left of allowing chit funds to flourish since the 1980s in West Bengal and urged people not to be lured by high return of chit fund companies. "Do not invest in chit funds," she said.