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HC Circuit Bench inaugurated: Chief minister will write to CJI

Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will write to the Chief Justice of India protesting against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's inauguration of the Circuit Bench of Calcutta High Court in Jalpaiguri without the involvement of the Calcutta High Court and the state government.

"I will write a letter to the Supreme Court. The Circuit Bench is a part of the Calcutta High Court. Was anybody from the Calcutta High Court present at the programme. Even the state government was not informed," the Chief Minister lashed out at the Centre.

She further maintained: "The Centre has not given a single penny. Rs 300 crore had been spent for setting up the Circuit Bench in Jalpaiguri. The state government had provided land, spent money and put in place the infrastructure. We completed the project in consultation with the Calcutta High Court. The Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court gave the date of inauguration four months ago. Notification from the Centre had been pending as it is required for setting up a court. It did not issue any notification. He inaugurated it only because Lok Sabha elections are approaching. It is a matter of great shame."

The Chief Minister further stated: "Neither the Calcutta High Court was involved, neither the state government. Neither the groom nor the bride is there but the 'band wala' has come. They hired a band party team to beat their 'election' drum. We are supposed to decide the matter in consultation with the Calcutta High Court. Who is he (Modi)? He comes to the state to do politics before the elections."

Countering Modi's statement in which he says that the state government has done no development work in North Bengal, Banerjee maintained: "During the Assembly elections' campaign in 2016, their Defence Minister assured that seven tea gardens owned by the Duncans would be opened. Did it happen? They also made false statements regarding the pension of the tea garden workers. We run schemes for the workers belonging to the unorganised sector. We provide Rs 1,500 as pension."

Giving a detailed account of what the state government has so far done in North Bengal, she said: "We set up new Secretariat in North Bengal. New districts, Alipurduar and Kalimpong, were created for carrying out development projects. We have constructed Bengal Safari Park, Bhorer Alo and many others. Has he (Modi) become blind?

"Why did no justices from the Calcutta High Court attend the inauguration programme conducted by the Prime Minister. Did he not inform any justice from the Calcutta High Court. Is there any constitutional respect for the state government or not? The Calcutta High Court sends the file to the state government as it provides manpower and the project gets cleared and then there is the inauguration. Does he think that he is the big boss of the country? Is this the case that he is the only clever person around and others are fools," Banerjee asked.

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