'Modi spreading lies about Bengal; Gujarat & UP epicentres of crime against women'
Kolkata: Stating that "Modi-Shah" runs a "syndicate" and spread lies and "canards", Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee on Monday denounced Prime Minister Narendra Modi's claim that women are unsafe in Bengal and termed Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh to be the epicentres of crime against women.
Confident of her party's win in the upcoming Assembly polls, Banerjee said that May 2 (the day of counting) will be of none other than Trinamool Congress' day as this poll battle was a "one-on-one fight between me and the BJP".
"BJP has the power of money, 'gunda' and machinery. I do not have any of these. But I have 100 per cent support of the masses," Banerjee said urging people in "every block and village" to consider her as the candidate in all the 294 seats and to ensure the victory of TMC candidates, "including the women, many of whom are from Tollywood industry" so that all can come to the state Assembly in 2021.
In the same breath, she took a swipe at Modi for renaming all important establishments in the country after himself and said someday he would even rename India. "After stadium, schools and colleges, Covid vaccine has turned to Modi vaccine by putting his photographs on it and also sent his name to ISRO," Banerjee said after covering around 3.5 km distance on foot, leading her party's rally on International Women's Day from College Square to Dorina Crossing..
"Often two leaders of the syndicate — Modi Babu and Shah Babu — visit Bengal to spread lies. I respect the chair of the Prime Minister. But it is unfortunate that our Prime Minister keeps narrating lies and it happens nowhere else in the world. Yesterday he (Modi) said during the Brigade rally that women in Bengal are unsafe. I ask how can they move out freely here for their work even at the wee hours if they are not safe," she said.
Putting forward the "rate of crime against women" in Gujarat that she stated to be "model-state" of Modi and Union Home minister Amit Shah, Banerjee said as per media reports, at least two murders and four incidents of sexual assault take place in Gujarat every day. "The data of Gujarat government also shows that 1,944 cases of murders, 3,095 sexual assaults besides 4,829 kidnappings and 1,853 attempts to murder cases took place in Gujarat in the past two years," she said, adding that Ahmedabad and Uttar Pradesh report the highest cases of sexual assault in the country.
"It is our first responsibility to ensure the security of women and we will not tolerate their insult. We have set up fast-track courts. They have done nothing," she remarked.
Stating that BJP's meeting at the Brigade Parade Ground on Sunday was of "B-grade (meaning poor turnout of people)", the TMC supremo said: "Everything cannot be purchased by money. There are more people in our rally today (Monday) than there was at the Brigade on Sunday."
She continued her protest against the abnormal hike in prices of LPG cylinders saying that when the state government is providing free-of-cost rice, people needed to spend Rs 900 for each cylinder and this comes when the price of crude oil has gone down in the international market. "We want nothing but they must provide free-of-cost cooking gas cylinders to people," Banerjee said, urging people not to believe in the "jumlas" that they give ahead of every poll.