Mamata meets Modi, discusses BSF jurisdiction, Center-State relations, struggling jute industry and other issues

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi on November 24 and discussed a number of issues including the Center increasing Jurisdiction of the Border Security Force (BSF) in Bengal, the COVID situation, the jute industry stimulus plans, and the need for a healthy relationship between Central State and improved development. Mamata also asked the Center to release the payments that were owed to the state. “We are supposed to receive from the Center Rs.96,655 crore, and I asked the Prime Minister how the state can function if this payment is stopped. He said he would look into the matter, ”Mamata told media after meeting Modi.

Mamata asked Modi to withdraw the notification from the Interior Ministry increasing the jurisdiction of the BSF from 15 km to 50 km from the international border in Bengal. “The federal structure is very important in our country and we must keep it strong. Giving the BSF more power leads to a confrontation with the public order of the state, ”said Mamata. She said she had nothing against the OSB and that she “respected” all the agencies.

“A few days ago, three poor people died in BSF gunfire in Cooch Behar district. Also before, there were many deaths (due to BSF fire) in Uttar Dinajpur, Dakshin Dinajpur, Malda, Murshidabad, Cooch Behar, Uttar 24 Parganas…. We are ready to give whatever support is needed to the BSF, but the federal structure of the country must not be unnecessarily disrupted, ”said Mamata. On November 16, the West Bengal Assembly passed a resolution under Rule 169 requiring the Center’s notification to be withdrawn.

Mamata also inquired about the Centre’s policy regarding the vaccination of 12-18 year olds. “The schools and colleges have reopened, so I asked the Prime Minister to please consult the committee of experts and also send us vaccines so that there is no possibility of expiration,” he said. she declared. She also discussed the need to revive the struggling Bengal jute industry.

During the meeting, Mamata Banerjee spoke about the need for a strong relationship between Central State and growth and development. “Whatever our political differences, let them not affect our State-Center relations. If the State develops, the Center also develops. I invited the Prime Minister to inaugurate the Bengal Business Conference, ”she said.

Before meeting Modi, Mamata had a meeting with the top BJP leader, Subramanian Swamy. Asked about the meeting, she said, “What’s wrong? There may be political differences, but there are so many important figures; there, we forget about politics and we meet. It is our democracy. Praising Mamata after the meeting, Swamy said on social media: “Out of all the politicians I have met or worked with, Mamata Banerjee ranks with JP, Morarji Desai, Rajiv Gandhi, Chandrashekhar and PV Narasimha Rao who meant what they said and said what they wanted to say.In Indian politics, this is a rare quality.

Thelma J. Longworth