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‘Jungle raj’ in WB: Pranab
Published on 27 Dec. 2010 11:55 PM IST
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In a vitriolic attack on West Bengal’s law and order situation, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee likened the situation in the state to “jungle raj”.
Referring to the killing of a Panchayat pradhan at a party workers’ meeting he said the pradhan was murdered while working in his office.
“What kind of jungle rule one is living in here? Government’s first duty is to protect people and if that is not kept, what is the meaning of a government? In whole West Bengal this situation prevails,” said Pranab stepping up the attack on the Left rule in the state ahead of the assembly elections later next year.
At Nabagram in Murshidabad district, Mukherjee said that in last 34 years of CPI-M rule hundreds of Congress workers have been killed. “What for? You will stay at your place, I will stay at mine. Where is the scope for murder?”
Pranab Mukherjee said West Bengal had become the most backward in the last 34 years. The union finance minister also punctured the Left claims on union home minister P chidambaram’s letter and put the onus on West Bengal chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee to give a reply to the letter which asked the government to disarm CPI-M cadres in the state.
“The Home Minister has written to the state government. He has fulfilled his responsibility. Now the state government should fulfil its responsibility and reply by acknowledging receipt of the letter,” he told reporters at Burnpur after an event on Sunday.
Meanwhile, CPI-M state secretary Biman Bose still maintained that Chidambaram’s letter had not reached the government yet.
“The state government has not received the letter. I have heard what Pranabbabu has said. Definitely a reply will be given on receipt of the letter,” he told reporters.
Acknowledging existence of CPI-M camps in Jangalmahal, Bose said, “In what has appeared to be contents of the letter, a reference was made of the existence of CPI-M camps. The camps are there to shelter homeless people. Where would the homeless people go? CPI-M party offices have been converted into camps to shelter homeless people.”
“Let Trinamool Congress give a list of their partymen killed. We are prepared to give a list of CPI-M men killed. What is being said is to confuse people. Trinamool Congress had in its memorandum said that 55,000 people had died,” he said referring to Chidambaram’s letter which stated that 96 Trinamool cadres had been killed and 1,237 injured till December 15.
The letter also gave corresponding figures for CPI-M at 65 killed and 773 injured while that of the Congress at 15 killed and 221 injured. Chidambaram’s strongly-worded letter to Bhattacharjee came in the wake of ally Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee alleging misuse of central security forces in the state and offering to quit if her charge was proved wrong.
“If these armed cadres continue to take upon themselves the duties of maintaining law and order, I wonder what the role of security forces is, specially central para military forces which have been deployed at the request of the state government?” Chidambaram had said in the letter.
His letter came a day after a Trinamool Congress delegation had met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and conveyed to him alleged misuse of central security forces in West Bengal.
Trinamool Congress earlier said that since CPI-M policy was to depend on lies, murder and terror, it is least expected that they would acknowledge the receipt of the letter. “We are keeping a watch on the situation and will form our opinion after a discussion within the party,” TC secretary-general Partha Chatterjee told reporters.

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