The Telegraph
Tuesday , July 2 , 2013
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Sikha jab on ‘tall talk’

Trinamul MLAs Sikha and Somen Mitra at the Congress headquarters on Monday. Picture by Bishwarup Dutta

Calcutta, July 1: Trinamul MLA Sikha Mitra today said only “tall talk” was heard on microphones these days and “little work” was being done, adding that she didn’t “care” about the consequences of her statements perceived in Trinamul circles as anti-party.

“Nowadays, only tall talk is heard on microphones. There is little work. But (the late) B.C. Roy, who was the chief minister of Bengal for over 14 years since 1948, talked less and worked more,” Sikha said.

The MLA from Chowringhee also praised the women of Kamduni village for protesting the atrocities against women in the state.

Sikha added: “What is going on across the state? Why are people not protesting that?” she asked. “Don’t be afraid. Please raise your voices because Bengal is being driven to disaster. Hats off to the women of Kamduni.”

The Trinamul MLA’s statements are being seen as a criticism of Mamata, who had recently dubbed the Kamduni women “CPM cadres” during a visit to Barasat where a student was raped and murdered last month.

Sikha’s outburst today came during a seminar on the late B.C. Roy on his birth anniversary at the Congress headquarters.

The event was also attended by Sikha’s husband Somen Mitra, a Trinamul MP from Diamond Harbour.

Sikha dared the Trinamul leadership to take action against her for speaking the “truth”.

“I always speak the truth, come what may. The Constitution has guaranteed me the freedom. I don’t care about the consequences,” she said.

On Roy’s birth anniversary last year, Sikha was equally vocal against the chief minister for her consistent grumbling over the dearth of funds.

“When B.C. Roy became the chief minister of Bengal, the state was in a mess. He never felt helpless about how to work. Once you are in the chair, you have to work. Taka nei, taka nei bolle cholena (it doesn’t help if you keep saying there is no money). People will not listen to that. They want performance,” Shikha had said.

The Chowringhee MLA had also filed a defamation suit against industries minister and Trinamul secretary-general Partha Chatterjee for his comments against her after her outburst last year.

Trinamul sources said Sikha’s comments today against Mamata were the result of the leadership’s failure to implement the suspension notice on her last year.

On December 12 last year, Trinamul had suspended Shikha for an “indefinite period” because of her “anti-party activities”.

Both Sikha and Somen today said they were yet to receive the suspension letters.

Reacting to the comments, a Trinamul vice-president said tonight that the leadership had “collected information” on what Sikha had said about the chief minister.

“We are keeping a watch. We will take a decision at an appropriate time,” he said.