KOLKATA: Kolkata Port Trust (KPT) will invite Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on its 150th-year celebration scheduled to be held in the first week of November. The invitation is expected to bring Modi and Mamata on the same stage.
The Prime Minister and the West Bengal CM have not shared a stage in the recent past. After refusing to attend meetings with the Prime Minister, Mamata met Modi on September 18, the first time since the two hit out at each other during the Lok Sabha elections campaigns.
“We have informed the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) about our programme. We are yet to know his schedule. We have come to know the Prime Minister may attend the international science conference scheduled to be held on November 5 in Kolkata. After getting a nod from the PMO, we will fix a date to organise the celebration around that time. We will also invite the Chief Minister,” said a KPT official. While the KPT completed its 150-year journey on October 17, the KPT authorities did not celebrate the occasion.
“Modi has not visited the state since he became Prime Minister for the second term. We came to know about Modi’s possible visit to the state in the first week of November and took the decision to celebrate the occasion if and when he arrives,” said the official.The two last shared the stage back at Visva Bharati’s convocation programme in Santiniketan in 2018.
Things got worse when the Centre and the state had a fallout pver setting up a port at Tajpur in East Midnapore district. Mamata, expressed her displeasure on several occasions accusing the Centre of not showing enough intent to take the issue forward.