The TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee led West Bengal government has denied permission for Amit Shah’s chopper to land in the Malda Airport. Reportedly, Amit Shah was set to hold a rally in Malda on 22nd January 2019. Amit Shah will reach Kolkata and then take a chopper ride to Malda to attend a public rally with BJP workers from North Bengal, according to India Today.
The reason provided by the Malda administration is that it is not possible for VVIP choppers to land in Malda this week. They have claimed that the Airport is under construction.
According to India Today, in the letter to BJP, the additional district magistrate has written:
“As per the report of the executive engineer, PWD (civil), Malda Division, up-gradation of work at Malda Airport is going on in full swing. A large quantity of fine sand, dust and GSB materials is lying all along the runway and also stacked all around the site. Moreover, the temporary helipad is not maintained properly due to this ongoing construction work. In this situation, Malda Airport is not suitable for safe landing of helicopters. Hence, granting of permission [for Amit Shah’s chopper] is not possible”.
However, according to India Today, the helipad area is clean and no construction work in underway. The India Today report also found that choppers land at that spot regularly.
Times Now found that even BJP has written to the Malda administration and questioned the denial saying that every week, VVIP choppers are allowed to land in Malda. BJP has also sought an explanation for permission being denied to Amit Shah while other VVIP choppers land in Malda regularly.
Talking to India Today, a ground crew member also said that Mamata Banerjee and Mithun Chakravarty regularly use the helipad.
The Mamata Banerjee government has come under attack for the violence it had unleashed on BJP workers. During the Panchayat elections held in West Bengal, the death toll rose rapidly as political violence was rampant. In May 2018, a youth was found hanging from a tree in Purulia. A note left on the body said that he had been killed because he was a minor when he joined the BJP.
A pregnant relative of a BJP candidate was reportedly raped by TMC goons. In another incident, a BJP supporter was publicly and brutally thrashed by a TMC Minister. Unknown gunmen had also hijacked ballot boxes to ensure free and fair elections are not held. In fact, the TMC had also won 20,000 seats uncontested because opposition candidates were not allowed to file nominations.