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Centre’s apathy, neglect can’t halt WB’s progress: Mamata

Accusing the Narendra Modi government of denying funds to the state, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee here today said Centre’s “apathy and neglect” cannot halt West Bengal’s development.

“Does the Centre feel no shame? They are not giving funds meant for people in distress,” Banerjee said.

“After the floods in Chennai, the Centre released funds in three days. It’s been months since floods had ravaged Bengal, but not a single paise has been given,” she said addressing a meeting here.

The chief minister, however, assured the people, saying, “Have faith on us. We are working for you despite financial compulsions. We want to work more and more for people”.

In an apparent reference to the opposition criticism of alleged corruption in TMC, she said, “I don’t need house, I don’t need car, I don’t need land. My party workers will toil hard”.

“If someone gets money in hand, that individual may be a thief. The party is not,” she added.

Further hitting out, Banerjee said the opposition only appeared on TV studios and spread canards against her.

The chief minister said that even as the state has won democratic rights, economic independence was yet to be attained “due to step-motherly attitude of the Centre”.

Stating that West Bengal has inherited a legacy of huge debt burden from the previous Left Front Government, Banerjee said she was confident that progress and development of her state would not be stalled due to paucity of funds and neglect.

“The CPI-M had led the state to a debt trap, the BJP is taking away our revenue. The Congress promised to give a package, but didn’t keep its promise. We are putting pressure on the Centre to release all pending funds. Why should we pay for the sins of the CPI-M?,” she said, demanding justice in the devolution of funds.

Taking swipe at the inauguration and foundation-laying ceremonies of projects worth several crores during previous regime, Banerjee said the left Front government had only given assurances and did not work.

“Unlike other governments, we always fulfill our promises. We never make promises that we cannot keep,” she said.

Referring to the recent infant deaths at a government

hospital, Banerjee in a strong message said, “The administration has taken the right decision regarding punishment to some of those responsible for the incident.”

Further stating that her government has been able to boost collection of revenues, she said, “I work for the people to the best of my abilities.”

Meanwhile today, she launched the ‘Sabuj Sathi’ project for Howrah and flagged off 31 buses in 11 routes for the district, besides laying the foundation stone of a 300-bed multi-super specialty hospital at Uluberia.

She also inaugurated road projects, several health care projects, Karma Tirtha, new buses for the districts, Pather Sathi motels, bridges and hostels for boys and girls.

Besides, she laid foundation stone for renovation of administrative buildings, minority hostels, godowns, renovation of Damodar river, various irrigation projects, among others.

The chief minister also distributed several services including Kanyashree, Yuvashree, Sikshashree, equipment to fishermen, Kisan and artisan credit cards, different agricultural machineries and equipment, pattas, financial assistance for natural disasters and a host of other such services.

Banerjee said that her government would develop Amta Sporting Ground as a stadium and announced allocation of Rs 50 lakh for the purpose.