Amidst the bitter battle being fought for the 2021 Bengal Assembly Elections, reports suggest that the TMC chief is unlikely to attend the meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today over the COVID-19 situation in the country and the ongoing vaccination drive. According to News agency ANI, State Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay will be present at the meeting instead of the CM.
#NewsAlert | West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee likely to skip the Covid review meeting with PM Modi today. State Chief Secretary to be present at the meeting.— TIMES NOW (@TimesNow) April 8, 2021
Sreyashi with details. pic.twitter.com/7DXVL4NGCe
According to reports, Mamata Banerjee has cited her campaigning schedule for the ongoing West Bengal Assembly elections as an excuse to skip this PM-CM meet, which is being held to discuss the COVID-19 situation in the country.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be interacting with Chief Ministers of various states on the COVID-19 situation and vaccination-related issues today via video conferencing at 6:30 PM today.
Mamata Banerjee had skipped PM Modi’s CM Covid-review meet in the past too
PM Modi’s last interaction with chief ministers was on March 17 during which he had expressed concern over the rise in COVID-19 cases in parts of the country and called for “quick and decisive” steps to check the “emerging second peak”. Then too, the West Bengal CM had chosen to stay away from the meeting citing pre-scheduled election meeting in Jhargram as the reason.
Though this particular conduct does not suit Mamata Banerjee’s demeanour and stature, the West Bengal CM has many times in the past indulged in such frivolousness. She gave another all CM virtual meeting a miss in June 2020 after being visibly upset about not being invited as a speaker. TMC MP Kakoli Ghosh alleged in a tweet saying the Centre is against the people of Bengal.
Mamata Banerjee has also been skipping meetings held by Niti Aayog, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and termed it as a ‘futile exercise’.
Fresh COVID-19 cases hit an all-time high in India on Thursday, surpassing the 1.26 lakh mark in a single day.