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CM hardens stand on BJP

Calcutta, May 7: Mamata Banerjee today said she would not back the BJP even if it begged with her, the comments coming in a minority pocket in Diamond Harbour on a day Narendra Modi addressed three rallies in the state.

“Take it from me, the BJP won’t be able to form the government in Delhi on its own because it won’t get more than 160 seats. There is no question of backing you even if you beg,” the Bengal chief minister said in Metiabruz, one of the seven Assembly segments in the Diamond Harbour Lok Sabha seat that her nephew Abhishek Banerjee is contesting.

A Trinamul general secretary said Mamata’s “emphatic comments” on “having nothing to do with the BJP” was necessary to “counter the Opposition’s propaganda against us and further strengthen our minority vote bank”.

The leader said the chief minister had “strategically chosen” Metiabruz, which has a minority population of over 60 per cent, to make her stance on the BJP clear. The CPM and the Congress have been hinting at the possibility of a post-poll understanding between Trinamul and the BJP.

During her 35-minute speech, Mamata accused Modi, whom she referred to as “dangababu (instigator of riots)”, of inflaming the situation in Assam, where 39 people have died in violence since Thursday.

“Don’t give a single vote to a person who has inflamed the situation in Assam, forcing affected people to flee their homes,” Mamata said.

Referring to the BJP prime ministerial candidate’s allegation at a rally in Nadia’s Krishnagar earlier in the day that there had been a spurt in violence against women in Bengal, Mamata said: “I came to know that dangababu has spoken about violence against women in Bengal. But this is not expected from a person who had concealed his wife’s name for so long. She has to silently suffer all through her life.”

At another rally in Behala’s Chowrasta later, Mamata said it was “our decency that we allowed him to address rallies in Bengal even after he said so many things against us”.

“If I wanted, I would not have allowed him to land at the airport. In a fraction of a second, I could have prevented him from coming to Bengal,” the Trinamul chief added.