February 2020
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National News
No Indian will be left out: Smriti Irani on NRC
Kolkata: Union Minister Smriti Irani on Tuesday hit out at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for her opposition to NRC, saying that the BJP-led government at the Centre is committed to protecting the rights of each and every citizen of the country.

The illegal infiltrators will be dealt with as per law and the constitution, she asserted.

"No Indian will be left out... we are dedicated towards protecting the rights of the citizens of the country," the union minister said on NRC.

Irani criticised the ruling Trinamool Congress in the state for political violence and corruption and said the cut money controversy is an example of its corrupt government.

"The fact that TMC has ordered to return the cut money taken by their party leaders from masses who availed government schemes, is a blatant example of the corruption in the TMC government. Those who have raised their voices against cut money and have sought their money back are now being raped and murdered," Irani said.

A woman from Moynaguri in Jalpaiguri district who had demanded the refund of the cut money given by her was gangraped by alleged TMC leaders.

Banerjee's opposition to policies of the central government are well known to the people, she said.

"The belligerent stand taken by Mamata Banerjee is preventing the people of the state from availing benefits provided by the central government, that could have reached farmers, women and children.

"Establishment of industries have been stalled by the West Bengal government ... The Lok Sabha election results in West Bengal has shown that people of the state want change," Irani, who is union cabinet minister for textiles and women and child development, said.

BJP won 18 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in the state, just four less than TMC in the Lok Sabha polls.

Referring to Banerjee's opposition to bank mergers and her letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi that it would cause job losses, Irani said Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has articulated that not a single job will be lost because of the merger.

The fact that Chief Minister of Bengal has taken positions against the Centre is nothing new for the people of Bengal.

"In fact when it comes to the issue of illegal immigrants in Bengal she held a different position in August 2005 when she hurled papers at the Lok Sabha deputy speaker as a mark of protest against the inclusion of names of illegal immigrants in the voter list of Bengal.

"So the dichotomy in her stand is not a new thing," she said and hit out at Banerjee for her opposition to the NRC.

Referring to Trinamool Congress leadership hitting the streets in West Bengal over NRC in Assam, Irani said the Union Home Minister Amit Shah has already assured the citizens of the country that no citizens will be left out.

"This stand by TMC also reflects its dichotomy as it was Banerjee (then a Congress leader) who had in 1993 during the Left Front regime held a rally to support "No identity card No vote" that led to the killing of 13 Congress activists. So when the Bengal CM marches with the Left, will she forget the martyrdom of those dead activists," Irani said.

She was commenting on the resolution passed in West Bengal assembly last week against NRC jointly by TMC, the Left Front and the Congress.

Speaking on Jammu and Kashmir post abolition of Article 370 in the valley, Irani said the resolve of the Indian people and Parliament were seen in the Lok Sabha.

"Not a single bullet has been fired since the abolition of Article 370 ... We will defeat the nefarious intervention of Pakistan in Kashmir," she said.

Irani, who was in the city to address a press conference on 100 days of the Modi 2 government, lauded its achievements and said it is a government which has taken bold initiatives and decisive decisions for the overall development of the country.

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