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221 in 2021: Mamata

221 in 2021: Mamata
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Kolkata: Trinamool Congress (TMC) chairperson Mamata Banerjee said her party will come back to power in Bengal for the third consecutive time with around 221 seats.

Speaking at an interactive session organised by India Today Conclave East 2021 at a city hotel on Thursday evening, she said: "We will come to power in 2021 with more seats than what we got in 2016 and it will be around 221."

Criticising Union Home minister Amit Shah for his shameless arrogance, she said: "He is talking about me as if I am his bonded labourer or domestic help. What does he think of himself? He tries to scare me. I am not scared of anyone. I am honest and don't need a certificate from them."

Asked about the "bua bhatija" issue raised by Shah, she maintained: "What's the harm if someone joins politics? He should tell how his son is occupying a key post in BCCI. What's the harm if children of stars join the film industry or children of industrialists join the family business."

Calling the BJP as "the most corrupt and inefficient party whose only business is to divide people and society," she said: "BJP has brought caste-based politics in Bengal. They have incited one caste against the other, one religion against another and now they are trying to create a divide between the Bengalis and non-Bengalis. They have tried to create a division among the Bengalis. This is a dangerous trend."

Coming down heavily on the saffron party for "stifling the voice of those who oppose them," she said it is most unfortunate that those who oppose them are branded as anti-nationals. "If you talk against them they will brand you as Khalisthani, Pakistani. I have never seen such arrogance in my life," she maintained.

Clarifying the term 'outsider', she said: "We have people from different states who live peacefully and happily in Bengal. They are here for generations and some of them speak better Bengali than us. They are not outsiders. The outsiders are those who come to loot the state. We will not allow them to rob Bengal. The game will not be so easy."

Referring to the lack of understanding of Bengal of the BJP's national leaders, she said: "They should do some homework before making statements. First, they said Rabindranath Tagore was born in Santiniketan, then they garlanded the statue of a local hunter instead of Birsa Munda. In 2019, they had vandalised the statue of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar."

Asked about the defectors, she stated: "It is good that they have left our party. It will have no impact on the election. They have painted themselves in black and now BJP has put them in a washing machine and they have come out clean."

Banerjee reiterated that in Bengal, the election will be on the basis of development and not on muscle power.

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