Mamata flags women’s safety in Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat at Women’s Day rally

TMC chief leads walkathon through Kolkata, says she’s the candidate on all 294 seats

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday took the electoral fight to the streets of Kolkata with an all-women’s rally on the occasion of International Women’s Day. Ms. Banerjee walked from College Square to Dorina Crossing in Esplanade flanked by a number of film and television stars, some of whom who are also contesting the upcoming Assembly polls as Trinamool Congress (TMC) nominees.

The Chief Minister has regularly held rallies on International Women’s Day but Monday’s road show was to add more momentum to the TMC’s electoral campaign where women are at the centre of the campaign with “Bangla nijer meye kei chae (Bengal wants its own daughter)” the new campaign slogan of the party.

Addressing a gathering at the end of the rally, Ms. Banerjee said “women will make a new Bengal”.

Countering the BJP’s campaign, the Chief Minister said the Prime Minister was peddling lies when he says that women are not safe in West Bengal. “Ahmedabad, which is the model of Modi-Shah governance, records four cases of rape every day and Uttar Pradesh records highest cases of rape in the country,” she said.

Ms Banerjee also made it clear that the forthcoming Assembly poll was her election and declared that she was the candidate for all the 294 seats. “I am the one contesting on all 294 seats. It is me versus the BJP. BJP has money and goons and I have all the support of the people,” she said.

Flagging the rising prices of petroleum products, particularly cooking fuel LPG, Ms. Banerjee demanded that the Centre give LPG free of cost. She also said the Brigade rally of the Prime Minister on Sunday was “ B- grade” and it did not have the crowd that had turned up for the TMC’s road show.

Along with the slogans centred on women, Ms. Banerjee also held aloft a placard with ‘Joy Bangla’ (Hail Bengal). Almost all the speakers including the TMC nominees like Sayani Ghosh and Lovely Maitra, who are contesting polls on TMC ticket, raised the same slogan.

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