Bengal No. 1 on all development indices: Mamata
Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urged Union Home minister Amit Shah to cross-check the facts before making any statement on Bengal.
"Amit Shah always tries to paint a dismal and gloomy picture of Bengal as if no development has taken place in the state, and highlights poor healthcare infrastructure and deteriorating law and order situation. He should cross-check or else every statement he makes will be challenged and refuted," Banerjee said while addressing a press conference at Nabanna on Tuesday afternoon.
Banerjee further added that Bengal is number one in the eradication of poverty along with 100 days work under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme, rural housing and road, MSME sector, skill development, minority scholarship, e-governance and e tendering. "Bengal has received an award from the Centre for carrying out the projects successfully. Shah should know this before making frivolous comments," she said.
She also said since 2011, Bengal's GSDP has gone up by 2.7 times. During this period, the tax revenue has gone up by 2.9 times and capital expenditure by 7.2 times. Plan expenditure has gone up by 5.9 times and social sector expenditure by 5.6 times during this period. In agriculture and allied sector, expenditure has gone up by 6.1 times. In the physical infrastructure sector, expenditure has gone up by 3.9 times since 2011. She said since 2011, the revenue deficit to GSDP has gone down to 1.57. It was 3.75 before 2011. Fiscal deficit decreased to 2.94 from 4.24, she maintained. Comparing Bengal's growth to that of India, she said: "While India's GDP is 4.18 percent, Bengal's is 7.26 percent. In GVA, India is 3.89 percent while Bengal is 7.39 percent. In the industrial sector, India's growth is 0.19 percent while in Bengal it is 5.79 percent. In the service sector, India's growth is 5.55 percent, while Bengal's growth is 9.26 percent. In the agriculture sector, India's growth is 4.05 percent whereas it is 4.79 percent in Bengal. The state has received Rs 22,000 crore FDI since 2011.
"I was challenged... here is my reply," she said at a press meet here.
Banerjee said political murders have gone down to 153 between 2011 and 2019 as against 663 in 2001-11. "BJP is terming every death as murder. If any of their workers commit suicide, the leaders call it a murder," she maintained.
"According to NCRB data, political killings, other incidents of crime and rape cases have decreased during the TMC rule. BJP leaders, while pointing fingers at others, should also speak up against the Hathras rape-murder incident in Uttar Pradesh," Banerjee added.
Crimes against women in Bengal have gone down to 1,068 in 2019 against 2,046 in 2012. "We have not manufactured the figures, it has been provided by the National Crime Record Bureau," she maintained, adding that Kolkata has been declared as the "safest city" twice. She said 383 former Maoists had surrendered and of them 374 were given Special Home Guard jobs. Three hundred and seventy KLO members have also been given similar job opportunities. She said no major incident took place in the Hills and in Jangalmahal.
Demolishing Shah's claim that the health infrastructure has gone down in Bengal, Banerjee said: "He should know facts before making any statement."
She added that the Health department's budget has gone up to over Rs 11,000 crore against Rs 3,584 crore. There are 24 medical colleges of which 14 were built after 2011 and 10 are coming up soon. There are 42 super-specialty hospitals, 79 para-medical colleges and 14 mother and child hubs in Bengal. There are 70 SNCUs, 3000 SNSUs, 14 mother and child care hubs, 152 fair price diagnostic centres and 117 fair price shops. The number of beds have gone up to 86,000.
The infant mortality rate has gone down to 22 from 34. The institutional delivery and immunisation are around 98.5 percent.
In the education sector, the total number of universities are 42 while 577 new colleges have come up. There are 172 ITIs and 176 polytechnics.