Mamata continues tirade against CPI(M), Cong

Kolkata: Continuing her tirade against the CPI(M) and the Congress over the Saradha chit fund scam, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday said that the two parties had a lot to answer for and asked partymen to counter the allegations vigorously.

"They (CPI-M) are merrily calling everyone chit fund thief. They themselves have to do some very serious answering about their dubious role during their regime," Banerjee was quoted by a party insider as telling a close door general council meeting of party MPS, MLAs and councillors here.

Ridiculing the CPI(M) for branding many of her party leaders as thieves, the chief minister said "Kunal (Ghosh) is a thief, Tumpai (party MP Srinjay Bose) is a thief, then Mukul is a thief and I myself am also a thief. But you (CPI-M leaders) are all pious."

Party MP Kunal Ghosh against whom Saradha Group chairman Sudipta Sen has brought allegations in a letter to CBI was not present at the meeting.

The CM alleged that the CPI(M) was hand in glove with chit funds and had helped their 'wild growth' in the state, while the Marxist party and the Congress were conspiring against the TMC government.

She directed her partymen to politically tackle the 'malicious campaign'.

"I exhort you to politically counter such malicious campaign by going to the people but not by pushing them into their houses so that they cannot mislead," she said.

Questioning why a CBI enquiry was not ordered into chit funds during the Left Front regime, Banerjee referred to the anti-chit fund bill passed by the assembly and said, "We are serious and our action in the last three weeks have shown it."

She also referred to the establishment of the Shyamal Sen enquiry commission and a Special Task Force to probe the scam.

Cautioning party workers about indiscipline she said that the party had zero tolerance towards it.

"I know what is going on. I know what partymen are doing. I get all the information. You cannot use the party flag for wrong use. You cannot bring down the dignity of the party flag," the CM said.

Banerjee said that she would not allow involvement of the party's student wing in any untoward incident at campuses and warned that it would be driven out if it did so.

She warned leaders of the party's labour wing Indian National Trinamool Trade Union Congress that multiple party-affiliated unions would not be tolerated.

"There will be one recognised union in a factory. We will not tolerate factions," she said.

On the panchayat elections over which the government is at loggerheads with the State Election Commission, she said that the party had wanted it in September last year.

"It did not take place even in October, November and December. If voting is held in the summer heat, people will die. They will be sitting in air-conditioned rooms," she said referring to the SEC.