Situation in country worse than emergency: Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: Hitting the streets to protest against the land ordinance of the Narendra Modi government, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday accused the NDA regime of throttling the voice of the opposition and the media to land the country in a situation worse than an emergency.

"The Congress had imposed the Emergency. Now there is more than Emergency in the country. The doors for journalists have been closed. Those raising their voices against the government, are being gagged. "They are trying to silence the critics by letting loose the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), ED (Enforcement Directorate), or the NIA (National Investigation Agency)," said Banerjee, who led the rally from Moulali to Mayo Road.

Mamata Banerjee

Attacking Modi, Banerjee said his government was "fanning communal violence" and indulging in lies. Taking a dig at Modi's regular radio show "Mann ki Baat" where the prime minister addresses listeners, Banerjee interspersed her Bengali speech with Hindi expressions.

"He is only delivering lectures. Mann ki Baat (speaking one's mind) patahi nahi hain kiska baat. Doodarshan ab ban gaya BJP darshan. Dimag hi nahi hain to dimag chalega kaise. (They are hosting 'Maan ki Baat'. But nobody knows whose words they are saying. Doordarshan has become BJP darshan)."

The Trinamool Congress chief said the BJP's list of achievements was virtually barren. "They only click selfies, fan communal violence. Their favourite job is to divide the people on the basis of religion. They only indulge in lies," she said.

Iterating her party's strong opposition to the land ordinance, Banerjee said: "From the outset, our position is clear, and we stick to it. We are totally against this land ordinance. We won't allow anybody to forcibly acquire land." Apparently targeting the CBI for slapping a notice on her party, seeking details of its accounts, she said: "They should have gone to the income tax department, and taken details of my party's account from them.

But instead they are sending us notices. There will be heaps of notices and we will return those to you." Obviously referring to the BJP, she said the Trinamool was being targeted because of its strident opposition to the land ordinance. "Don't think you can silence me by sending notices. I will continue to speak out my mind against land acquisition by force."

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