Dum Dum (West Bengal), May 17 (IANS) Slamming West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for questioning the role of the Election Commission, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said she would not have been the CM if the poll panel had not ensured free and fair elections by deploying Central forces.
“Didi, now you are using abusive words for Election Commission, election process and the Central forces. But why are you forgetting that the Left Front (government) had also made you to face a similar situation?
“Country’s constitutional bodies had only ensured fair elections in Bengal. Had these constitutional bodies not been there, and enough central forces had not been deployed, today you would not have been the Chief Minister of Bengal,” Modi said at his last public meeting in Bengal ahead of the last phase of Lok Sabha polls to be held on May 19.
Banerjee on Wednesday had alleged the Election Commission’s decisions to curtail election campaigning and remove two senior officers were taken on the direction of the BJP, its President Amit Shah and Prime Minister Modi.
She had also claimed that RSS-backed functionaries had been inducted into the Election Commission.
The crowd at the Dum Dum Central Jail ground where former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had also addressed a public meeting over 20 years back, welcomed Modi by turning on their mobile flashlights and waving their phones, besides giving a huge rounds of applause.
Defying the hot and sultry weather, men, women of various age groups gathered at the ground to get a glimpse of the Prime Minister.
People from adjacent parliamentary constituencies travelled in buses and four-wheelers to reach the venue and hear Modi’s last speech in West Bengal in this election.
“We are here for over three-four hours as this is our chowkidar’s last speech here. We want change in the state,” said a woman wearing a Modi-mask.
Women present along with their children in their arms and the paraphernalia like Modi masks, flags and banners made the gathering a riot of colours.
There was “no phase of the ongoing general election or any other election which has been completed without violence in West Bengal”, Modi said, adding that this Lok Sabha polls would be remembered for Didi’s attitude towards the Constitution and democracy.
During the elections and run-up to the polls, many BJP workers and candidates were attacked, and their houses burnt down, he said.
“There is no place for such behaviour in a democracy. But Didi is bent on destroying all aspects of democracy. This is the result of Didi’s arrogance. She is making a mistake of considering the state her personal property,” Modi said.
He also said, “Friends, even in Jammu and Kashmir, where the danger of terrorism looms day and night, the local panchayat election and general election have been completed peacefully.”
In a veiled attack on Banerjee, Modi said the dignity of the country is “higher” than “didi’s arrogance”.
“Everyone has the responsibility to save our democracy. You are aware of the fact that you are going to lose your power. Didi, you admit this truth and leave the path of violence.”
Drawing a huge round of applause, Modi said, “Didi is not the supreme, but the people of Bengal are. You have the freedom to dream for the Prime Minister’s seat. Didi’d abusive words against the Army, security forces and constitutional bodies have put a question mark on her trustworthiness. The country will not tolerate arrogance.”
“If you open the blindfold of pride and vote bank from your eyes, you will also see a prosperous India.”
Modi assured he would pay back the “love” received from Bengal despite all the hindrances, with “interest by undertaking development works” across districts in the eastern state.
He asked saffron supporters to “stop proxy voting” and reply to “didi’s bullet” by casting “your own votes”.