New Parliament row: The controversy around the new Parliament building seems to refuse to die down even after its inauguration. On Monday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi by tweeting a collage photo of two pictures- 'After Independence,- showing first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, first President Dr Rajendra Prasad and his other Cabine members including Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar and 'And Now'- featuring current Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with saints clicked at the new Parliament on the occasion of inauguration of the building. PM Modi stood in the middle among dozens of Hindu sages. Union Ministers- Nirmala Sitharaman and Kishan Reddy are also seen in the frame.
Decoding Banerjee's picture
Mamata might have tried to show that Nehru kept religious leaders away while clicking for the Parliament-related event as India is a secular country. In contrast, PM Modi was clicked with the saints who represent the Hindu religion. Several Opposition leaders criticised PM Modi for holding religious rituals in the new Parliament.
'Religious leaders were invited but not president'
Earlier, TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee, who is considered as the successor of Mamata, on Sunday (May 28) said that religious leaders and priests were invited to the grand inauguration of the new Parliament building by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but President of India Droupadi Murmu who is the constitutional head of the country was not.
The TMC national general secretary questioned what was the role of religious leaders in the Parliament.
"You can surely invite them when you visit a temple, but what role do the religious leaders have in the Parliament, they are not members," the Trinamool Congress MP from Diamond Harbour constituency in West Bengal said.
Addressing an impromptu press conference at Keshpur in West Midnapore district following a roadshow in Garbeta as part of his 'Nabajowar' in TMC programme before the panchayat polls in West Bengal, Banerjee claimed that the BJP was trying to win the next elections on the basis of religion.
"He (Prime Minister Modi) gave a slight teaser today on how he wants to run the country in future, that he wants to turn it into an autocracy from a democracy, it is a shameful and sad state of affairs," Banerjee said.
The TMC MP claimed that when the prime minister was talking of women's empowerment, agitating women wrestlers were forcibly moved away from a protest they were holding about two kilometres away from the new Parliament building. He claimed that the President of India was insulted by not being invited to the event.
Banerjee alleged that the Modi government was spending thousands of crores of Rupees on constructions like Central Vista and new Parliament building, which he claimed were avoidable expenses, while "not releasing funds" for over 11 lakh people in Bengal for their basic housing programmes under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana.
(With PTI inputs)