Union minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti and Trinamul Congress leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay on Tuesday sparred over the issue of MGNREGA dues to West Bengal, with the BJP leader saying TMC members were only interested in politics and least bothered about the welfare of the people of the state.
Raising the issue during Question Hour in the Lok Sabha, Bandyopadhyay urged the rural development minister to clear the pending dues for West Bengal on account of the rural jobs scheme MGNREGA.
Bandyopadhyay said a Trinamul delegation had sought to meet Jyoti in October, but she had left without meeting them.
Hitting back at Bandyopadhyay, Jyoti, the Union Minister of State for Rural Development, said the Trinamool leader was levelling false allegations against her and she was in fact waiting for two-and-a-half hours in her office for the delegation from West Bengal.
"They had sought an appointment for a five-member delegation, I agreed. Ten minutes later, they said 10 members would come. I agreed. I kept waiting for 2.5 hours in the office. They later said all MPs (of Trinamool) will come. I agreed to that as well. But, I regret to say, they were not interested in a meeting, they were only interested in propaganda," Jyoti said.
The Trinamul Congress has been claiming that the Centre had not cleared Rs 18,000 crore due to West Bengal under various central schemes, including MGNREGA, PM Awas Yojana and National Health Mission. The Trinamool claims the dues have not been paid for the past two years.
"They are not bothered about the people of West Bengal. They only wanted to indulge in politics. They should not level false allegations," Jyoti said.
"Mahua Moitra (Trinamul member) has called me a 'sinner' (paapi). I wish to state, Mr Speaker, I am a saint and they have faced the results," the minister said.
Trinamul Congress members staged a walk-out from the Lok Sabha over Jyoti’s response.
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