Trinamool Congress’ Mahua Moitra once again called Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti a “liar” and said the party will continue its protest even as its general secretary Abhishek Banerjee announced an indefinite sit-in on Thursday. in front of the official residence (Raj Bhavan) of West Bengal Governor CV Ananada Bose, hours after he flew to visit flood-affected areas in north Bengal and then to Delhi.
The TMC has been protesting the alleged withholding of West Bengal’s Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) dues by the Centre.
“This will continue until we receive our dues. We started it in Delhi and will continue it in Bengal. We are waiting for the governor to return. So we will wait. We are very patient. “Once you finish your helicopter tour of North Bengal and Delhi, we hope you have time to come to the state and listen to the rice farmers of the billions of people who have been denied their daily wages,” Mahua said Moitra to news agency ANI on Thursday.
Attacking the Minister of State for Rural Development, the TMC MP said, “Sadhvi Niranjan is a liar and I have already said so officially. She gave us an appointment. It was not possible for us to enter the Krishi Bhavan without an appointment. There were 40 of us. We waited, but she refused to see us. She refused to meet with the victims’ families. She called them janata (public). I want to ask you a question if janata didn’t vote for you, how are you sitting there? She is one of the biggest BJP liars I have ever seen.”
Also on Wednesday, Moitra alleged that Jyoti was lying, responding to a post shared by the State Ministry that said she waited for more than two hours to meet Trinamool MPs at her office, but the delegation did not show up.
Moitra has alleged that the Union minister made the Trinamool MPs “wait for 3 hours and then fled through the back door” to avoid meeting the delegation that had come from West Bengal to discuss the issue of MGNREGA funds.
“Sorry @SadhviNiranjan, you’re lying and all (and I’m being polite). You gave an appointment to our delegation. You went through all the names, ticked each one before allowing us in, made us wait for 3 hours and then sneaked out the back door,” the TMC firebrand wrote on X (formally Twitter).
The development came when the TMC delegation led by party member Abhishek Banerjee on Tuesday met Jyoti. TMC leaders staged a protest at Rajghat on Monday demanding release of MGNREGA funds.
On Tuesday, Banerjee alleged that MPs, including women, were manhandled by the Delhi Police at Krishi Bhavan while protesting against the release of MGNREGA funds. He also called it a “black day for Indian democracy” and called for a ‘Raj Bhavan Abhiyan’ campaign in Kolkata on October 5 against the atrocities.
On Thursday, Banerjee announced the sit-in after thousands of party functionaries and top leaders marched to the British-era building in Kolkata to protest. The huge show of force paralyzed traffic in the heart of the busy metropolis.
“We had requested a meeting with the governor, but he did not grant us audience. He has gone to North Bengal. It seems as if he considers us bonded labourers. Today we have come here and we will not end this demonstration until he meets us,” Banerjee said addressing the gathering.
The party termed the absence of the city governor on a day when the TMC had notified its intention to hand over a memorandum to him and his suggestion that a delegation of TMC leaders fly to meet him in North Bengal, as reflecting a “ Zamindari” (feudal mentality).