Mamata flays BJP on Gorkhaland statehood issue

Mamata flays BJP on Gorkhaland statehood issue

Even as the BJP West Bengal unit leaders distanced themselves from the comments of its Darjeeling candidate S S Ahluwalia on a separate Gorkhaland state, chief minister Mamata Banerjee accused the saffron party of ‘communal and divisive politics’ and reiterated that she would never allow the state to be divided. 

Mamata, on a tour of the north Bengal districts ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, insisted that Darjeeling cannot be allowed to go the Telangana way, promising that she would not let an inch of land to be given away. 

Accusing the Congress and the BJP of playing a “game” in Andhra Pradesh, the TMC leader said they would not succeed in West Bengal. 

“Till I am alive, I will not give an inch of land this way. Land can’t be ceded in the interest of politics. If you think of playing the same game you did in Andhra, you will not succeed,” she told an election meeting at Itahar in North Bengal. 

Meanwhile, West Bengal BJP leaders were quick to distance themselves from Ahluwalia’s comments on Tuesday that the BJP would help form a separate Gorkhaland state. 

“We are not in favour of a separate Gorkhaland state,” senior state unit leader Tathagatha Ray said. 

“The BJP is in favour of smaller states for better development, but we do not advocate this in the case of Darjeeling as it has only three subdivisions. Ahluwalia’s comments were blown out of proportion. We feel the Hills issue should be dealt compassionately,” he added. 

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