KOLKATA: Opposition parties in West Bengal took to the streets on Tuesday demanding the resignation of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee after the Narada news website’s sting claimed to show 11 Trinamool Congress leaders accepting cash bribes. Banerjee, however, hit back with allegations of a “conspiracy” hatched by the opposition to indulge in “blackmail with black money smuggled from abroad”.
The CPI(M)’s student, youth and women’s wings took out a procession with banners stating: “Chhori hazar hazar koti, Didir paaye hawai choti (Thousands of crores stolen but Didi wears rubber sandals)” and shouted slogans against Mamata and her nephew and Lok Sabha MP Abhisekh Banerjee. The Congress, too, took out protest marches and threw play currency notes in the air, demanding Mamata’s resignation. The BJP blocked roads and led a protest march to Raj Bhavan. In a memorandum to Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi, the BJP delegation demanded the removal of Mamata as Chief Minister.
Though TMC leaders in the city stayed quiet, Mamata, on a tour in north Bengal, hit back. At a public meeting at Kurseong, Darjeeling, an angry Mamata thundered, “You cannot scare us by blackmailing us using black money smuggled from abroad. ...you can’t cow us down. We work with prestige and sincerity. TMC is the only clean and transparent party. We work for the masses. If I get a chance in my life time, I will show these conspirators and teach them a lesson.”