Mamata to raise Bengal’s cause with PM

Published: 09th April 2013 08:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 09th April 2013 08:13 AM   |  A+A-

Barely a month after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee refused to share the dais with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi at a function held at Malda, Didi is set to meet the PM and seek ‘justice’ for the state.

Mamata is scheduled to call on Manmohan on Tuesday and Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday.

“I am going to Delhi to seek justice. We are not going to meet him (Manmohan) as a partyman. He is the Prime Minister. We want to know why Bengal is being denied its due. We will also protest against the economic blockade by the Centre,” she told reporters in Kolkata on Monday before setting off for the capital.

Didi will remain here until Friday and is being accompanied by her Finance and Panchayat Ministers, Amit Mitra and Subrata Mukherjee respectively.

Meanwhile, the TMC chief’s meeting with the senior Congress leaders is being seen as an indication of a possible thaw in the frosty ties between the former UPA allies.

Following her decision to walkout on the Manmohan Government over the FDI issue,  Mamata had been a bitter critic of the Congress and the Centre’s alleged apathy towards debt-ridden West Bengal.

Even as the government sources say that a financial package is being worked out for West Bengal, Mamata remained in denial.

“We are not begging. We are not demanding any special package. We are demanding our rightful share,” she said.

During her visit, Didi is expected to once again push for a three-year moratorium on the annual interest that the state pays to the Centre.

According to her, West Bengal was paying  `25,000 crore every year as interest on the loans, while ` 40,000 crore was being taken away as Central taxes.

“It is almost two years (since the TMCGovernment came to power). Howlong should we wait for the Central funds, I will ask the Union Finance Minister,” Mamata said.


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