Falling behind Mamata Banerjee in the race to oppose the Narendra Modi government on its demonetisation drive, the Left Front has called a 12-hour bandh in Bengal on Monday, the very day the CM is to hit the streets in Kolkata.
The decision comes a day after the two Left-ruled states, Kerala and Tripura, gave a bandh call on the issue. If successful, it will add to public inconvenience by shutting down banks for a third day after the weekend.
Banerjee, despite being on the same side of the political divide on demonetisation, opposed the bandh call. “The bandh proposal didn’t come at the meeting of opposition parties in Delhi. We do not support any bandh. People are suffering so I appeal to all to help citizens and stand by them at this hour of crisis,” she said. The bandh call initially did not feature in the Left’s week-long agitation programme beginning November 24 announced by chairman Biman Bose on Thursday. A section of CPM leaders in Bengal was hesitant to take the “ultimate step” without properly gauging public mood. But they got over the dilemma possibly out of an identity crisis in the state’s political scene, with Trinamool and BJP grabbing eyeballs and the Left seeming to be the odd man out.
Bartaman Patrika epaper 26-11-2016: http://epaper.prabhatkhabar.com