India appears to be transferring in direction of a one nation-one political social gathering system, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee quipped on Wednesday afternoon, minutes after conducting a digital assembly of chief ministers from seven non-Bharatiya Janata Social gathering-ruled states.
“Allow us to overlook which social gathering is ruling a specific state. To save lots of democracy, now we have to unite,” Banerjee mentioned with out naming the BJP, her important menace in poll-bound Bengal. She alleged that the Centre is taking coverage choices unilaterally and thrusting these on the states with out session.
“All of the chief ministers complained that they’re dealing with intimidation. Central (probe) businesses are getting used. The states are being financially disadvantaged,” Banerjee mentioned on the state secretariat after the assembly.
Banerjee and Congress’ interim president Sonia Gandhi collectively convened the assembly which went on for 2 hours. Considerably, Gandhi requested Banerjee to conduct it.
Although the demand for postponement of the Nationwide Eligibility cum Entrance Take a look at (NEET) and Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) was the first trigger, the assembly’s agenda went far past.
Gandhi, who opened the dialogue, mentioned the states had been dealing with lots of issues due to the insurance policies of the Centre. She referred to the rise in gas costs, arrears within the states’ share of the Items and Providers Tax (GST), disinvestment in public sector enterprises, privatisation of airports and several other different points.
In addition to Banerjee, others who took half within the assembly had been Uddhav Thackeray from Maharashtra, Amarinder Singh from Punjab, Hemant Soren from Jharkhand, Bhupesh Baghel from Chhattisgarh, V Narayanasamy from Puducherry and Ashok Gehlot from Rajasthan. Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan couldn’t attend.
This was the primary time for the reason that Covid-19 pandemic began that chief ministers of non-BJP dominated states spoke out in opposition to Central insurance policies from a standard platform.
Requested by the media whether or not the assembly was a precursor to a united motion for bargaining with the Centre, Banerjee mentioned, “Phrases comparable to blackmailing or bargaining don’t apply right here. We’re speaking in regards to the issues of the frequent man. It’s been a very long time since we bought our share of the GST that’s collected from the state. We’re not getting monetary assist for combating the Covid-19 pandemic.”
“The Centre is disinvesting shares in public sector items at random however we aren’t supposed to speak in regards to the pursuits of the folks. The position of the states and the Centre in our federal construction has been clearly outlined by the Structure. Underneath the present circumstances, a battle between the Centre and the states is inevitable. That will likely be dangerous. We don’t need it. Solely sturdy states could make a robust Centre. Allow us to work for a united India,” mentioned Banerjee.
Through the assembly, Soren mentioned, “Today the opposition seems to have develop into weak. We now have to take a stand.”
In her reply, Banerjee mentioned, “Sure, we should elevate our voice. In any other case different political events is not going to exist.” Reacting to this, Sonia Gandhi mentioned, “I agree.”
The BJP Bengal unit mentioned Wednesday’s train was an try by the Congress to discover a proxy fighter. “The Congress is within the doldrums and Sonia Gandhi wants folks to battle her struggle. Banerjee stepped in as a result of she is afraid of dropping the 2021 meeting polls. It’s due to the election that she is exhibiting concern for the scholars,” mentioned BJP nationwide secretary Rahul Sinha.
Political columnist Suvashis Maitra mentioned, “The Congress is now able the place Sonia Gandhi will want folks like Banerjee who had been as soon as faces of the social gathering however left as a result of they had been disgruntled.”