Agnipath BJP’s ‘Ploy’ to Create Own Army, Says Mamata; Uproar in Bengal Assembly

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While Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was speaking in the Assembly, Opposition BJP leaders started protesting and shouting slogans and staged a walkout.

KOLKATA — The West Bengal Assembly on Friday witnessed pandemonium after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the Central government’s Agnipath scheme was a ‘ploy’ of the BJP to ‘create its own armed forces’.

“The announcement for the Agnipath project was not made by the defence ministry. The announcement was made by the Union home ministry. This is actually a ploy of the BJP to create its own cadre force under the garb of army training. The defence forces are just being used as a facade. The BJP is projecting a lollypop to create a force of its own goons throughout the country,” the chief minister said on the floor of the House during the ongoing monsoon session of the Assembly.

While she was narrating her speech, the opposition BJP legislators led by the leader of the opposition Suvendu Adhikari started protesting and shouting slogans.

The ruckus took a serious turn after the chief minister said that she will send the Agniveers thrown out of jobs after four years to the residence of the BJP leaders in the state and ask them to demonstrate there. “After four years of service many will lose their jobs. I will send them to your residences and you will have to take responsibility for their jobs,” she said.

These comments agitated the BJP legislators further. They rushed to the well of the House and started protesting and shouting slogans. Soon the BJP legislators staged a walkout from the House. Later Adhikari told the media that the chief minister had insulted the Indian Army by making such comments and that too standing on the floor of the House.

“Her comments come as insults not only for the future Agniveers for the entire armed forces. She is threatening us that she will send the unemployed youths to our houses and encourage them to take law into their own hands. This is a thoroughly unconstitutional approach. As chief minister she cannot say such things and that from the floor of the Assembly,” the leader of the opposition said.

Earlier, speaking at the Assembly without directly referring to the recent row of teachers’ recruitment irregularities, the chief minister admitted that there had been some mistake on part of the state government. “We have provided employment to almost one lakh individuals since we came to power. There can be 100 mistakes. But opportunity has to be given to rectify the mistakes,” the chief minister said. — IANS

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the BJP is projecting a lollypop to create a force of its own goons throughout the country. — File photo

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