THKURNAGAR: Accusing the BJP-led government at the Centre of conspiring to falsely implicate political opponents,
on Thursday said that he is not afraid of central agencies such as the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
Banerjee's assertation came two days after a CBI team examined his
in connection with the coal pilferage case. The agency also examined Rujira's sister Menaka Gambhir on Monday.
"The Centre is simply misusing these agencies to hatch a conspiracy against its political adversaries like me. I challenge them to carry on with their activities, we are not afraid," the Diamond Harbour MP said at a rally in Thakurnagar, a stronghold of the politically significant Matua community.
Banerjee, also the youth wing president of the TMC, accused Union home minister
of misleading members of the Matua community on providing
During a recent meeting here, Shah asserted that the contentious
Citizenship Amendment Act
(CAA) would be enforced after the completion of the coronavirus inoculation programme.
"He (Shah) told you (Matuas) that the CAA will be implemented after the Covid-19 vaccination is over. But the vaccination will take nine years to complete. He is making false claims to garner votes," the Diamond Harbour MP said.
"How can the
give you citizenship when you are already citizens of the country. Don't you have voter cards? Didnt you vote in the last general election? They (BJP) took votes of the people and are now saying that these people are illegal," Banerjee said.
BJP leaders should carry the documents of their forefathers to prove their own citizenship, he said.
Banerjee also alleged that water was poured at a helipad to prevent him from coming to the Thakurnagar two days ago.
"But they forgot that I am a Bhumiputra (son of the soil) here. I am not an outsider like you. The voters of Bengal will reject you," he said apparently referring to Shah and BJP president JP Nadda who held public meetings here recently.
Matuas, originally from East Pakistan, are weaker section of Hindus who migrated to India during the Partition and after the creation of Bangladesh. Many of them have been accorded Indian citizenship but a sizeable section of the population has not got it.
The Matua community, with an estimated population of three million in the state, can tilt the scales in favour of a political party in at least four Lok Sabha seats more than 30 assembly seats in Nadia, and North and South 24 Parganas districts. It once stood behind the TMC but had supported the BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Now, both the BJP and the TMC are wooing the Matua people ahead of the assembly election due in April-May.
Accusing the BJP of indulging in divisive communal politics, he said, "They didn't even call a single SC leader at the inauguration of the Ram Temple (at Ayodhya). Not even the President of India. Around 200 pandits were invited but none of them was from the SC community."
The TMC leader, who is the nephew of Chief Minister
, wondered how the BJP calls the ruling party of West Bengal pro-Bangladesh for chanting "Jai Bangla (hail Bengal)", when its own slogan "Sonar Bangla" (Golden Bengal) is part of the national anthem of the neighbouring country.
"They (BJP) call us pro-Bangladesh for chanting Jai Bangla slogan. But what about their own slogan 'Sonar Bangla' which is the national anthem of Bangladesh," Banerjee said.
"Jai Bangla" was a popular slogan during the Bangladesh liberation war, while the BJP is promising people to make the state "Sonar Bangla" if voted to power in the assembly election due in April-May.
The saffron party has been accusing the Mamata Banerjee government of appeasing Muslims and failing to stop infiltration from Bangladesh.