An effort to combat COVID19 by endeavouring to cut across party lines to reach out to the people ran into rough weather with PCC chief Somen Mitra lashing out at both the BJP-dominated NDA government at the Centre and the Trinamul Congress-run state government accusing both of making tall claims while working in a partisan manner.

Not mincing words in lambasting the NDA and Trinamul dispensations, the veteran Congress leader has questioned the quantum of relief the people of this state would get from the Centre’s economic package to offset the effects of the pandemic and accused sections of the state administration of sabotaging Congress’s initiative to bring relief to the people.

Volleying his charges in the backdrop of allegations of food grains allocated for the people by the Centre and state not reaching them, the PCC chief questioned the effectiveness of a large economic package announced by Prime Minister Modi for the people struck by COVID-19 for the past few weeks.

Nor did he spare the state administration, training his guns on the chief minister, Mamata Banerjee’s 21 March declaration that her government would give food grains including wheat and rice-free of cost till September.

While wondering where the food grains allotted for the people went, Mitra said that allegations are pouring in from the districts that ration dealers are not supplying adequate food grains especially in extensive areas of Hooghly, Burdwan, Nadia, Howrah as well as parts of North and South -24-Parganas.

On the other hand, the ration dealers are alleging that they are not getting the quota of grains, he said. The people are hearing the speeches of the chief minister promising food grains almost daily, Mitra said.

But such utterances are not rooted in reality, he added. Some of the Trinamul leaders are alleged to be intimidating ration dealers and are allegedly distributing the food grains among their supporters, the PCC chief said.

Will this partisan politics continue even amid COVID19, he asked. Trinamul leaders and activists are being given priority in issuance of “corona passes”, Mitra alleged. Police have rejected an online application from state Congress for such passes, he said.