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Modi can meditate but ..: Mamata threatens to move EC

May 29, 2024 19:04 IST

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday said that the Trinamool Congress will complain to the Election Commission if Prime Minister Narendra Modi's meditation in Kanyakumari is televised, alleging that it would amount to violation of the Model Code of Conduct.

IMAGE: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee greets people during an election campaign rally in support of TMC candidate for North Kolkata, Sudip Banerjee for the last phase of the Lok Sabha polls, in Kolkata, May 29, 2024. Photograph: ANI Photo

Modi is scheduled to meditate at Vivekananda Rock Memorial, a monument built in tribute to Swami Vivekananda, in Kanyakumari following the culmination of the Lok Sabha polls campaign on May 30, according to BJP leaders.


"We will complain. He can meditate, but televisions cannot show it," she said, alleging that this will amount to "violation of the MCC."

"Does anyone have to get cameras for doing meditation?" she asked, claiming that it was a way of campaigning during the silence period between the end of campaign and the poll date.

According to BJP leaders, Modi will meditate from May 30 evening to June 1 evening at Dhyana Mandapam, the place where Vivekananda — a spiritual icon admired by Modi — is believed to have had a divine vision about 'Bharat Mata'.

Speaking at an election meeting on the same ground where the PM held a rally on Tuesday in favour of Jadavpur constituency's BJP candidate, the Trinamool Congress chief claimed that Modi goes into meditation for 48 hours before the final phase of polling in every election.

The Prime Minister had undertaken a similar meditation exercise in a Kedarnath cave after the 2019 election campaign.

"If they (BJP) return to power this time, there won't be any political party, elections, independence, religion, humanity or culture," she said.

The TMC supremo sought to dismiss Modi's claim that the BJP will achieve the best results in Bengal this election, asserting, "This means they have lost; they will get rosogolla (zero) in Bengal."

She said the TMC will support the opposition INDIA alliance in forming a government in Delhi and urged the people not to vote for the CPI(M) or Congress in Bengal.

"That will help the BJP," she said, in the campaign meeting at Baruipur before the seventh phase election to nine Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal.

"Had I not come out of the Congress and formed the Trinamool Congress, then even today we would not have been able to defeat the CPI(M) in Bengal," she said.

Asserting that she fought against the CPI-M for 34 years to oust its government from Bengal, she said, "If we could achieve that, we can also defeat the BJP, and we will do it."

Banerjee alleged that the CPI-M and BJP have entered into a tacit understanding in some constituencies for the ongoing polls.

Explaining that she decided to hold this campaign meeting here to respond to the comments made by Modi on Tuesday at the same location, Banerjee emphasised that people of all castes and creed were her brothers and sisters.

"I will not accept the judgment on OBC reservation", she said, reiterating her stand over a Calcutta high court order striking down the OBC status of several classes in West Bengal granted from 2010, finding that such reservations to vacancies in services and posts in the state were not in consonance with the provisions of law.

She claimed that people of all religions will be affected by the judgment.

Accusing the Mamata Banerjee government of appeasement politics, Modi, addressing a poll meeting earlier in the day in Kakdwip, said, "Reservations were looted in West Bengal and false OBC certificates were issued to Muslims." He also claimed that the TMC was misleading Muslims by spreading false information regarding the court's verdict.

Accusing the BJP of embarking on a slander campaign against the TMC, Banerjee claimed that her party has had to fight against Central Bureau of Investigation, Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax.

The chief minister said the CBI has sent a notice to TMC MLA from Canning Purba, Saokat Molla, to appear before it on Wednesday itself.

"Amid the elections, the CBI has asked Saukat to come and meet its officials," she said.

The TMC MLA had earlier been summoned by the CBI in 2022 for questioning in connection with a case of alleged coal theft from the mines of Eastern Coalfields Limited.

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