Kolkata: Trinamool Congress has outlined a counter-campaign against the BJP claiming that the West Bengal’s dues under the PM Awas Yojana should not be released as the state government is running the same scheme under a different name.
Trinamool’s counter-strategy will be to highlight other Indian states adopting the same method of running the scheme under different names and getting dues cleared.
On May 12, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wrote a etter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi asking the Central government to immediately release the state’s dues for Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and PM Awas Yojana.
Shortly thereafter, Leader of Opposition in West Bengal Assembly, Suvendu Adhikari also wrote to the Prime Minister claiming that although 32 lakh houses were constructed in West Bengal under PM Awas Yojona, in reality the state government was running the scheme under a different name – Bangla Awas Yojana.
He requested that Central funds under this housing scheme should not be released unless the state government runs the scheme under the name of PM Awas Yojona.
However, the claims by Adhikari have proven to be slightly counter-productive as the Trinamool Congress leadership has decided to highlight examples with photographic documents where states like Uttar Pradesh and Delhi are also running the scheme under different names but were not deprived of dues.
West Bengal Finance Minister Chandrima Bhattacharya said: “Several BJP-ruled states besides Uttar Pradesh are running PM Awas Yojana under different names and hence, this cannot be an excuse for holding back the dues of the West Bengal government.”
She pointed out that in Uttar Pradesh, the scheme is run under the name of UP Mukhyamantri Awas Yojana and still they are getting their dues, while in Delhi it called the New Delhi Awas Yojana.
“However, BJP leaders have not raised any question on this issue,” she said.
BJP national vice president Dilip Ghosh told IANS that it is not the question of PM Awas Yojana alone.
“West Bengal is running every Central scheme under different names. It is a deliberate attempt to undermine the contributions of the Union government in the development of the state which no other state government is doing. And it is not just the name change that the Leader of the Ppposition has highlighted in his letter to the Prime Minister, he also highlighted how Trinamool Congress leaders at different levels are misusing Central funds for filling up their own pockets,” Ghosh said.