In an unprecedented move, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday offered people a government job if they help cops to get rid of rioters ‘on the spot’. In a bid to improve the law and order situation in the state, the TMC chief asked people to identify those who participate in or instigate riots. While speaking at an administrative meet in Durgapur on Monday, Mamata Banerjee said that a cash reward of Rs 1000 will be given to the citizens if they send a photograph of the rioters to cops.
She added that a government job will be offered to those who will help cops apprehend rioters ‘on the spot’. The West Bengal chief minister said that there is a need to strengthen the local surveillance and spot the culprits while asking the state director-general of police Surajit Kar Purkayastha to ask police stations to undertake ‘community development engagement programmes’.
The promise was made by Mamata Banerjee following the Chaltaberia incident in North 24 Parganas’ Duttapukur on March 3 when a piece of meat was thrown at a local temple, leading to tension in the area. “It’s a conspiracy. RSS and BJP have a hand. I say this because we got this information from the arrested,” she was quoted saying by TOI.
The Chief Minister also had a word for the BJP’s ambitions to conquer West Bengal after its stellar run in the North East. Mamata said that Trinamool’s next target was Red Fort, an apparent reference to the Centre, adding that the party had the wherewithal to withstand the BJP’s “onslaught”.
Notably, Mamata is being seen as an active proponent of a non-BJP, non-Congress alliance that has the mettle to take on Narendra Modi’s winning run on the national level. The first call for such a third front came from Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao or KCR and soon found favour with the West Bengal Chief Minister. A buoyed BJP chief Amit Shah had said after the party’s win in Tripura that the party’s winning juggernaut would now take West Bengal, Odisha, Kerala and Karnataka.
She also hit out at the Centre for approving the strategic disinvestment of Alloy Steel Plant (ASP) by saying that TMC will protest against the decision in Parliament. “Start protesting in the Parliament. Call up Derek (TMC Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien) and tell him to start it (the protest),” Banerjee told party leader and Cabinet minister Arup Biswas.
The Centre had sought bids for divestment of ASP last month. The bids are to be submitted by April 11, 2018.
Talking about the reports of the Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) shifting out its headquarters from West Bengal, Banerjee said that state chief secretary has already written a letter to the Centre in that regard. She had described the move as a conspiracy by the Central government.