Bengal politicians' affair with foot-in-mouth remarks

From gold in desi cow's milk to baby should weigh 1500 kg, here's a lowdown on how Bengal's politicians made comments that invited ciriticism and ridicule

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee (L), state BJP president Dilip Ghosh (C) and Union Minister Babul Supriyo (R).

West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh recently made headlines with his remark that milk of native cow breeds has gold in it. He has also differentiated between native and foreign cow breeds by describing the former as “mother” and the later as “aunt.” However, Ghosh is not the only politician in Bengal who amuse and often shock people with their remarks. The state has a history of such motormouth politicians who often do not bother to mind their language.

The mercurial Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee occupies a prominent place among such politicians. During an election rally, prior to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, referring to one of PM Modi’s comments on the citizenship status of Bengal’s Matua community Banerjee said, “Now he is talking about the Matua community. He says that they are not Indian citizens. Is he a donkey?”

Also read — Man seeks gold loan against cows after Ghosh's remark

Banerjee had warned prior to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections that the Prime Minister will get a “slap of democracy” and dubbed him as “expiry babu.”

She made a hilarious gaffe during an event in Kolkata in February 2017 when she said that a newborn baby should weight at least 1,500 kg.

Her predecessor Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, although known for his sophisticated behavior, courted controversy with his remark about the Nandigram land agitation violence in 2007. Speaking on CPI(M) workers’ attempt to reclaim their land by force from the agitators, Bhattacharjee said that the agitators were paid back in their “own coins.”

A couple of months back, Union Minister Babul Supriyo wrongly attributed the abolition of the Sati custom to the Bengal Renaissance icon Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar. However, the custom was actually abolished due to the persistent efforts of another legendary social reformer Raja Ram Mohan Roy.

Soon after, the minister in jest even stated on a Facebook post that Raja Ram Mohan Roy had forgiven him through a text message.

Former chief minister of West Bengal and CPI(M) stalwart Jyoti Basu during his tenure once referred to the then Chief Election Commissioner of India TN Seshan as a “megalomaniac.”

During the 1960s, the CPI(M) leadership mocked veteran Congress leader Atulya Ghosh as “Kana Atulya” (blind Atulya) as he mostly wore dark glasses.

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