Mamata meets Modi, discusses BSF jurisdiction, Centre-State relations, struggling jute industry and other issues
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi on November 24 and discussed a number of issues including increasing the competence of the Border Security Force Center (BSF ) in Bengal, the COVID situation, recovery plans for the jute industry, and the need for a healthy relationship between the Center and the State to strengthen development. Mamata also asked the Center to release payments that were owed to the state. “We are supposed to receive from the Center Rs.96,655 crore, and I asked the Prime Minister how the state can function if this payment is stopped. He said he would look into it,” Mamata told the media after meeting Modi.
Mamata asked Modi to withdraw the Home Ministry’s notification increasing the BSF’s jurisdiction from 15 km to 50 km from the international border in Bengal. “The federal structure is very important in our country and we must keep it strong. Giving more powers to the BSF leads to a confrontation with state law and order,” Mamata said. She said she had nothing against the BSF and that she “respected” all agencies.
“A few days ago, three poor people died in BSF shootings in Cooch Behar district. Also before, there were many fatalities (due to BSF shooting) in Uttar Dinajpur, Dakshin Dinajpur, Malda, Murshidabad, Cooch Behar, Uttar 24 Parganas…. We are ready to provide all necessary support to the BSF, but the country’s federal structure should not be unnecessarily disrupted,” Mamata said. On November 16, the West Bengal Assembly passed a resolution under Rule 169 demanding the removal of the Center’s notification.
Mamata also asks about the Centre’s policy on vaccinations for 12-18 year olds. “Schools and colleges have reopened, so I have asked the Prime Minister to please consult the expert committee and also send us vaccines so that there is no wiggle room,” he said. she declared. She also discussed the need to revive the struggling jute industry in Bengal.
During the meeting, Mamata Banerjee spoke about the need for strong relations between the Center and the State to foster growth and development. “Whatever our political differences, let them not affect our relations between the state and the center. If the State develops, the Center also develops. I have invited the prime minister to inaugurate the business conference in Bengal,” she said.
Before meeting Modi, Mamata had a meeting with BJP leader Subramanian Swamy. Asked about the encounter, she replied, “What is the harm? There may be political differences, but there are so many important personalities; there we forget politics and we meet. It is our democracy. Praising Mamata after the meeting, Swamy said on social media: “Of all the politicians I have met or worked with, Mamata Banerjee ranks with JP, Morarji Desai, Rajiv Gandhi, Chandrashekhar and PV Narasimha Rao who meant what they said and said what they meant.In Indian politics, that is a rare quality.