Narendra Modi and Congress are "brothers" and two sides of a same coin, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said while asserting that only a person who is loved by all sections of people could be a national leader. "Both Narendra Modi and Congress are brothers. Congress and Modi are both sides of a same coin," Banerjee said while addressing a panchayat election rally at Berhampore in Murshidabad district.
Training her guns on Congress, she said "Whenever elections come knocking at the doors, Congress starts its propaganda by saying that Muslims should unite as Narendra Modi is coming. It has been ten years since the Gujarat riots, but Congress tries to rake up the riot-issue just before the polls and forget it when polls are not held". Earlier on Thursday, while addressing another rally in Nadia district, Mamata said "There are national leaders who love all sections of people and not just one particular section. Ramakrishna had said some call mother 'ma' and some 'amma'."
"In 1905, Rabindranath Tagore gave a call for Hindu-Muslim unity. Today Rabindranath and Kazi Nazrul Islam are weeping," she said. Banerjee said, the Centre was continuing schemes named after Rajiv and Indira Gandhi whom she admired, but questioned "How many projects are named after Swami Vivekananda and Kazi Nazrul Islam?"
Congress should be ashamed to seek votes after repeatedly raising the prices of petrol, diesel and fertiliser, she said adding, she had quit Congress "as the party was sold out to CPI(M)". Turning to the panchayat polls, she said "During polls BJP divide Hindus and Muslims along communal lines for votes," and that her government was working for the uplift of Muslims from their backwardness. BJP was not a political force in West Bengal, but had ganged up with CPI(M) and Congress as a 'destructive combination', she said.
Lashing out against CPI(M), Banerjee said "Earlier CPI(M) did not go to court, but sought votes. Now they are going to court." Accusing CPI(M) leaders of corruption during the Left Front regime, she said that she could have sent such leaders to jail, but chose not to.