KOLKATA: On Saturday, Union Minister Anurag Thakur raised questions about the silence of MPs belonging to the opposition Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) constituents who were planning to visit Manipur. He questioned why they were not speaking out about the recent incidents of violence and bloodshed during the panchayat polls in West Bengal, including atrocities against women in the state.
Thakur accused the opposition alliance, particularly the Congress party, of playing a drama about their visit to Manipur while ignoring the issues in West Bengal. He specifically directed his question to Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, a Lok Sabha member of Congress from West Bengal and the leader of his party in the Lok Sabha, asking whether he would urge other members of the opposition alliance to visit West Bengal and address the situation there.
This comes at a time when the monsoon session of the West Bengal assembly is in progress, and the ruling Trinamool Congress is bringing a special motion to discuss and condemn the situation in violence-hit Manipur. In response, the BJP's legislative party in the state assembly has also moved two adjournment motions to discuss atrocities against women and recent incidents of violence during the rural body polls. These discussions took place on July 27.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who leads the Trinamool Congress, has been using the Manipur issues as a means to criticize the BJP and the Union government. She has repeatedly claimed that despite sending a regular central fact-finding team to West Bengal, the Union government and BJP have remained silent on the situation in Manipur.