Mamata Banerjee cancels plans to attend Modi’s swearing-in ceremony, accuses BJP of politicising event

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West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi informing that she had changed her mind and will not attend the latter’s swearing-in ceremony on 30 May.

Mamata Banerjee

Banerjee, who was scheduled to be a part of the swearing-in ceremony on Thursday, said that she changed her mind in the last one hour. She wrote, “It was my plan to accept the Constitutional invitation’ and attend the oath-taking ceremony. However, in the last one hour, I am seeing media reports that the BJP are claiming 54 people have been murdered in political violence in Bengal.

“This is completely untrue. There have been no political murders in Bengal. These deaths may have occurred due to personal enmity, family quarrels and other disputes; nothing related to politics. There is no such record with us.”

She added, “So, am sorry, Narendra Modi Ji, this has compelled me not to attend
the ceremony.” She reminded Modi that the oath-taking ceremony was ‘an august occasion to celebrate democracy, not one that should be devalued by any political party which uses it as an opportunity to score political points.’ “Please excuse me,” concluded Banerjee.

The BJP had managed to make a serious dent in what’s known as Trinamool citadel of Bengal in the just-concluded Lok Sabha polls by winning 18 out of 42 seats. There were also reports that the BJP had invited many family members of those BJP supporters who were killed in political violence allegedly by Trinamool workers.

In an interview to Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar, Modi had revealed that he may have had a bitter political rivalry with Banerjee, but the latter often sent sweets and kurtas.

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