Naveen Patnaik plays host as arch rivals Mamata Banerjee and Amit Shah meet over lunch in Bhubaneswar

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Updated: Feb 28, 2020 5:40 PM

This was the first meeting between Amit Shah and Mamata Banerjee after the passage of Citizenship Amendment Act.

Mamata Banerjee shares meal with Amit Shah at Naveen Patnaik’s residence in Bhubaneswar. (Photo: Naveen Patnaik Twitter)

Union Home Minister Amit Shah and West Bengal Mamata Banerjee met today in Bhubaneswar for the first time after the passage of Citizenship Amendment Act. The leaders, sworn rivals, had lunch together at Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s residence. The gathering also included Bihar Chief Minister Nitish KUmar and Union minister from Odisha, Dharmendra Pradhan. The photos of the leaders sitting across the dining table was tweeted by Patnaik.

“Such a pleasure having the company of Union Home Minister Amit Shah ji, my colleague CMs, Mamata Banerjee, Nitish Kumar ji & Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan ji at Naveen Niwas. Had a wonderfully interactive time over some home cooked, #Odia delicacies,” the Odisha CM tweeted.

The leaders met during the 24th Eastern Zonal Council (EZC) meeting in Bhubaneswar. It was presided over by Union Home Minister Amit Shah. Chief Ministers of entire eastern regions attended the meet.

Mamata is arguably the fiercest critics of Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government. She led a whirlwind campaign against the Citizenship Amendment Act and left no stone unturned to attack Shah. Mamata has already declared that the CAA will not be implemented in West Bengal and the Bengal Assembly also passed a resolution against it. She has already halted all NPR-related work in the state and also voiced opposition to the proposed pan-India National Register of Citizens.

Meanwhile, when the West Bengal CM was asked about the Congress’ demand for Amit Shah’s resignation over Delhi violence, she replied, “Right now, the problem should be solved, political discussions can take place later.” She added that violence should not have taken place in the national capital and expressed anguish over the loss of lives.

“Police personnel and an IB officer lost their lives along with several people. The victims’ families should be given help and peace should return,” she said.

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