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Bista slams state over ‘sorry state of affairs’

Following Independence, West Bengal was one of the more developed states in India, contributing over 30 percent to the national GDP.

MANAS R BANNERJEE | Kolkata |

As West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is likely to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi tomorrow, BJP leader and MP from Darjeeling ,  believes Miss Banerjee should step down by owning moral responsibility for the “sorry state of affairs” in the state, and for her “inability to provide good, clean and honest government,” which, the MP says is what Bengal desperately needs. To substantiate his views, Mr Bista, also the BJP’s national spokesperson, says there is every reason for him to believe that the “rot in West Bengal starts right from the top,” which is why, the only way to put an end to this “steady downfall of a once great state, and the cancerous growth of extortion, political terrorism, arson, murder, rape cut-money, corruption, tolabazi (extortion) is to bring to justice everyone involved in these activities.” In what he says is an open letter to Miss Banerjee, Mr Bista says: “It is famously said ‘what West Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow.’

This was when West Bengal was a hub of industries, academia, art, culture, and economics. Following Independence, West Bengal was one of the more developed states in India, contributing over 30 percent to the national GDP. Even Bengal was one of the most industrialized states, with the highest literacy rates in the country.” “However, today, West Bengal has been relegated to one of the most regressive and repressive states in the nation and it did not happen overnight,” he says, adding, “Faulty policies and priorities of successive Congress, CPIM and TMC governments have contributed towards the downfall of this glorious state. When the Communists were removed from power, West Bengal had a debt of Rs 1.95 lakh crores. In the past 11 years under TMC, this debt has ballooned to around Rs 5.62 lakh crores, a rise of around three hundred percent.” “I am worried, if concrete steps are not taken to styme this downfall, and urgently at that, the situation in West Bengal may become unredeemable,” Mr Bista says.

Talking about the alleged scam in the teachers’ recruitment process, he says: “Imagine, a state where even a bird cannot flap its wing without her permission. When it comes to CM Mamata Banerjee’s dictatorial way of functioning, we are being asked to believe that only Partha Chatterjee was involved in the currently unfolding teachers’ recruitment scam.” According to him, the “scams” are not confined to the School Service Commission (SSC) alone, but that there have been scams in the College Service Commission (CSC) recruitment, Medical College recruitments and Engineering College recruitments. “In 2016, TMC indulged in the State Level Selection Test (SLST) ghotala, and Group C and Group D recruitment scam. Between 2013-16, TMC indulged in primary teachers’ recruitment scam, and upper primary teachers’ recruitment scam,” he alleges.

He says that the situation is worse in the DarjeelingKalimpong region, where there is no SSC or CSC. “Recruitments in schools and colleges are made on the basis of candidate’s allegiance to the TMC, without even conducting interviews. There has been massive corruption in the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration teachers’ recruitment and the a case is also being heard by the Calcutta High Court,” he says. “It is highly improbable that all these numerous scams, violence and suppression of democracy would be happening in the state without the tactical approval and blessings from the Chief Minister’s office,” he adds. “The fact of the matter is that, every TMC leader is a part of this ‘Syndicate Raj’, who have openly indulged in the ‘cutmoney’ and ‘tolabaazi’ culture and looting of the public funds. These are not just my assertions, but CM Mamata Banerjee herself accepted this fact, and mandated all TMC leaders and people’s representatives at all levels to return the ‘cut money’ they have extorted from the common people since 2011 before the 2021 legislative elections.”

According to Mr Bista, the recent revelations made by Partha Chatterjee alludes to the fact that money recovered by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is not his alone, but belongs to many other leaders in the party. “I strongly believe that the ED has only scratched the surface of the TMC ghotala racket, and the deeper they dig, the more rot they will find. Because, TMC’s origin story itself is grounded in looting of funds from the general public,” Mr Bista, also the national general secretary of the BJP’s youth wing, says.