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Congrats? Not from Mamata

Calcutta, Dec. 23: Congratulations in 2002, cold shoulder in 2007.

Mamata Banerjee today said she did not personally approve of Narendra Modi’s “politics of violence”, betraying her eagerness to court the minority community and papering over her reaction in 2002.

“I do not approve of Modi’s politics of violence. But since people have voted him to power, he should follow rajdharma and govern the state impartially,” the Trinamul Congress chief said.

“I am not a Modi supporter. But in a parliamentary democracy, it is people’s mandate that matters. Now that Modi has got this mandate, he should work for the welfare of the people,” she said.

Mamata, who has been trying to win back the support of the minority community, said she did not believe in politics that divided Hindus and Muslims. She had voiced her strong disapproval of the communal riots, the Trinamul leader added.

However, Mamata had sent a congratulatory message to Modi after the victory in 2002 elections.

The Bengal BJP leadership said Mamata’s observation was indicative of her “decision to distance herself from us”.

“It matters little to Modi what Mamata says about him. But we are bringing Modi here to kick off the party’s campaign for the panchayat elections,” Bengal BJP secretary Rahul Sinha said.

Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee refused to react to Modi’s victory, but CPM state secretary Biman Bose said the result would boost communal forces.

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