Mamata Banerjee likens army deployment in Bengal to military coup
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday likened the Army presence in the state to an attempted “military coup”. She accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party government at the Centre of “harassing people for political gains”.
“I am vocal against demonetisation and thus this coup. I am for people. Why aren’t they doing this elsewhere. They are saying Manipur, Assam and Nagaland, who have crosschecked their claims. Manipur and Nagaland are troubled places. Army is already there. Assam has BJP government. So who knows what the truth is,” Banerjee told The Indian Express.
Very unfortunate. Army stationed in front of Nabanno, the Bengal State Secretariat in a high security zone, inspite of Police objection 1/2
— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) December 1, 2016
Addressing a press conference at Nabanna, Mamata said, “We knew the country is undergoing an economic emergency unleashed by demonetisation. But now the states are being hounded by the Centre for not falling in line. Today it’s Bengal, tomorrow it may be Bihar or Uttar Pradesh. Even if the army is used to suppress communal tension or riots, the states are not being informed. Why was the state not informed in this instance?”
Banerjee added that she has great respect for the army “but the BJP is using them for their political motives.”
The Army, on its part, has said that the stationing of personnel was part of “routine exercise”. Army spokesperson SS Birdi told Hindustan Times, “This is a routine exercise and we have already informed the police and the district magistrates. This was basically done to know the number of load carriers available that might be of use to the army in times of emergency.”
@easterncomd but y in WB
— ArGo✘ (@thebakwaashour) December 1, 2016