Kolkata flyover photo appears in UP govt's 'development' ad; Abhishek says 'double engine' failed miserably
KOLKATA: After a full-page newspaper advertisement to endorse the apparent development works undertaken by Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh sparked off controversy for having used the photograph of a Kolkata flyover—with its trademark blue and white paints and yellow taxis plying on it—Trinamool Congress national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee, on Sunday, accused the former of stealing images of Bengal's infrastructure which was developed under the leadership of Mamata Banerjee. The Trinamool leader claimed that the 'double engine model' in the northern state had failed miserably. "Transforming UP for @myogiadityanath means stealing images from infrastructure seen in Bengal under @MamataOfficial's leadership and using them as his own! Looks like the 'DOUBLE ENGINE MODEL' has MISERABLY FAILED in BJP's strongest state and now stands EXPOSED for all!" tweeted Abhishek.
Ironically, the advertisement highlighted the development works of the Yogi government over the past five years. A picture collage below the advertisement comprises a photograph of a city flyover. Social media users identified the flyover as the 'Maa Flyover'. They have also claimed that the two buildings, which are seen along the same flyover in the collage, are of a five-star hotel chain.
Trinamool Congress secretary general Partha Chatterjee also criticised the UP Chief Minister. "When even Ajay Bisht can't help himself but use pictures of #BengalModel for his own publicity... Slow claps!": tweeted Chatterjee.
TMC leader Mukul Roy tweeted: "Mr @narendramodi is so helpless to save his party that other than changing CMs, he has also had to resort to using pictures of growth & infrastructure seen under @ Mamata Official's, as his own."
Mohua Moitra, Trinamool Lok Sabha MP, tweeted: " Thuggy Yogi in his UP ads with Kolkata's MAA flyover, our JW Marriott & our iconic yellow taxis! Change your soul or at least your ad agency Gudduji! P.S. Looking forward to FIRs against me in Noida now."
Senior TMC leader Firhad Hakim who is also the State Transport Minister said: "By posting the image of our pride Maa flyover of Kolkata as one built in Uttar Pradesh, the BJP government in the northern state has touched a new low of falsehood. It also indirectly admitted the spree of development under the rule of Mamata Banerjee in West Bengal and tried to appropriate it as its own."
Calling Yogi Adityanath as 'Thugi Adityanath', Derek 0' Brien, Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP said: "Earlier, he was Ajay Bisht who later became Yogi Adityanath and now after printing this poster he has become Thugi Adityanath." O'Brien suggested that in the future Adityanath should bring out another advertisement where he should compare the performance of the Bengal government with his government. The Bengal government had spent Rs 2.58 crore on the construction of 5100 km of rural roads till 2018- 19 while during this period the UP government had spent Rs 950 crore to build 1680 km of rural roads.
Bengal has 86,000 hospital beds, whereas Uttar Pradesh—which is a much bigger state— has only 57,000 hospital beds. Crime against scheduled caste is recorded at 0.3 per cent in Bengal against 25 per cent in UP.
Samir Chakraborty, veteran Trinamool Congress leader, said: "Yogi Adityanath has deceived the people by bringing out this collage. Unable to carry out any development in UP, he has taken the help of the development that is being carried out by Mamata Banerjee government claiming them to be his."
Reacting to the advertisement, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who is touring UP, alleged that the BJP government is "making false claims of development by putting fake pictures of flyovers and factories".
"There is no understanding of the issues of the public nor there is any link with it. The government is only about making false advertisements and castles in the air," she said in a Hindi tweet.
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav alleged that till now the BJP government was "falsely publicising" the works of the SP government as its own.
"The BJP must open an 'International Institute of False Publicity'," he tweeted in Hindi.
In a jibe at the BJP, senior Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh tweeted: "Have never seen nor heard such development. The Kolkata flyover has been dragged to Lucknow by our Chief Minister Adityanath jee...".
Meanwhile, the Bengal BJP tried to save face saying that even if the image was indeed that of Maa flyover, the TMC government does not have any other infrastructural development to flaunt.