Not leaving on a jet plane: After China, Mamata’s trip to Chicago gets cancelled

Foreign tours might just not be working for West Bengal’s Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at the moment, after her trip to Chicago has been cancelled, just days after the one to China was cancelled, reports The Indian Express.

The visit to Chicago was planned for August to attend a program organised by the Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago on 26th of that month, to mark the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s legendary speech at the Parliament of World’s Religions. The Ramakrishna Mission had invited Mamata to be the Chief Guest at this event.

The event, though, has since then been cancelled, with the death of a Ramkrishna Mission’s monk being given as one of the reasons. The report quotes a letter written by Vivekananda Vedanta society’s president – Swami Ishatmananda on 11 June where he cited the sudden demise of Swami Abhiramananda – the assistant general secretary and trustee of Ramkrishna mission and “unforeseen difficulties” as the reason for the program’s cancellation.

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A New Indian Express report though claims that there may be more to the matter than meets the eye. The report claims that a Hindu organisation comprising of NRI’s in Chicago was unhappy with the invitation extended to Mamata, and had threatened to protest against her at the airport.

The report also claims that one of the reasons for the event’s cancellation would have been to not divert attention from PM Modi’s visit to Chicago happening during the same time frame. This claim though might be disputed by many, considering the amicable chemistry Modi and Mamata had displayed during the former’s recent visit to Vishwa Bharati.

For Mamata though, the Chicago event’s cancellation might mean a loss of another foreign trip, just days after she cancelled her visit to China, after supposedly getting miffed owing to her request for a meeting with Chinese Communist party leaders, not being granted.


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