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Watch: Taking offence at Jai Shree Ram slogans, Mamata Banerjee walks off stage even as PM Modi and Bengal Governor look on

It is rather ironic that while Mamata Banerjee herself walks out of the stage, nonchalant about the fact that the Prime Minister was also present on the stage, she complains of "being disrespected" by the central government.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was seen walking out of the stage refusing to address the public gathered at Kolkata’s Victoria Memorial for Netaji birth anniversary celebrations. WB CM Mamata Banerjee who was sharing the stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, lamented of “being disrespected” because she could not stand the slogans of Jai Shree Ram, Bharat Mata ki Jai, etc, when she was invited to address the event.

Lashing out after hearing ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans, Mamata Banerjee lamented before walking off the stage: “Inviting people and then disrespecting them does not behove the government. This is a government programme, not a political party’s programme”.

In what appeared to be a rare moment, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar came together at Kolkata’s Victoria Memorial on Saturday to honour freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on his 124th birth anniversary. 

When she was invited on to the stage to speak a few words, some people were chanting slogans of Jai Shree Ram, Bharat Mata ki Jai and Joy Bangla. Getting offended by the slogans of Jai Shree Ram, Mamata Banerjee said that as a mark of protest against this ‘disrespect’, she would not say anything. Sulking, she walked off the stage even though several other dignitaries, including the Prime Minister, were on the stage.

BJP and Mamata Banerjee-led TMC have been engaged in a skirmish over the celebrations of the 124th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. While the centre has declared that Netaji’s birth anniversary will be known as Parakram Diwas, Mamata Banerjee had requested the centre to declare it as ‘Desh Nayak Diwas’ as Rabindranath Tagore had bestowed the title of Desh Nayak on Netaji.

Earlier in the day, when Mamata had led a march from Shyam Bazaar to Red Road in the city and paid a surprise visit to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s ancestral residence at Elgin Road she had criticised the Centre’s decision to announce 23 January as ‘Parakram Diwas’. “I don’t understand the meaning of ‘Parakram Diwas’. We celebrate the day as ‘Desh Nayak Diwas’,” Banerjee said.

Mamata Banerjee seems to have taken offence that the Modi government did not fulfil her demands. And to add salt to her injuries, the crowd gathered at Victoria Memorial decided to greet her with “Jai Shri Ram” slogans, which she considers as BJP’s deliberate attempt ‘to sell hatred ideology’. It is rather ironic that while Mamata Banerjee herself walks out of the stage, nonchalant about the fact that the Prime Minister was also present on the stage, she complains of “being disrespected” by the central government.

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