I am a Hindu girl: Mamata recites Chandipath at Nandigram, rejects ‘outsider’ tag

I am a Hindu girl: Mamata recites Chandipath at Nandigram, rejects ‘outsider’ tag

Biswabrata Goswami

NANDIGRAM, 9 MARCH: Chief minister Mamata Banerjee today launched a scathing attack on the BJP taking on it declaring herself a ‘Hindu girl”.

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Criticising the rival party’s alleged effort to divide the Nandigram on religious basis, she said, “The BJP should not ‘play its Hindu card with me as I am a Hindu girl and I do Chandipath before leaving home every day.” She also recited mantras (hymns) from a religious text, Chandipath during her speech.

Miss Banerjee today launched her election campaign from her own assembly center – Nandigram, a day before she will file her nomination for the seat while her former lieutenant-turned-bete noire Suvendu Adhikari will file his nomination two days later.

While addressing a booth-level workers meeting, Miss Banerjee took a dig at her once close aide Suvendu without taking his name even once and said, “People who had sold their souls to outsiders from Gujrat are insulting the Nandigram movement by playing the communal card.”

“Some people are talking about 70:30 ratio (of Hindu- Muslim population). Those doing that are insulting the sacred Nandigram movement which people of both communities fought together. People of Nandigram will make BJP ‘April fool’ on 1 April when polling is held,” she asserted.

She also came down heavily on being called an ‘outsider’ by Suvendu Adhikari and other BJP leaders.

“I have heard some people are calling me an outsider in Nandigram. I am amazed. I was born and brought up in the neighbouring Birbhum district, and the person who is calling me an outsider was also not born here. Today I have become an outsider, and those coming from Gujarat have become insiders in Bengal,” she said.

Making an emotive appeal to the people of the state , Miss Banerjee said, “I will never forget Nandigram, it is like my eyes.”

“If you don’t want me to file the nomination, I will not, but if you consider me your daughter, then I will move ahead with the filing of my nomination,” Miss Banerjee said during her speech in the meeting.

Miss Banerjee said she had made up her mind to contest either from the Singur or Nandigram–the two cradles of the anti-land acquisition movement– that catapulted her to power in 2011.

She has shifted from her traditional Bhabanipur Assembly constituency to Nandigram soon after her close aide Suvendu defected to the BJP and invited a challenge to her to contest from Nandigram only.

At the end, Miss Banerjee said that she taken a house in Nandigram for one year and she keep coming every three months. “Later, I will stay on. I will keep my word”, she said adding she would give a puja at the local Siva temple in Nandigram on the day of Maha Siva Ratri before leaving for Kolkata to release the TMC’s manifesto on 11 March.    

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