PM Modi misleading people with ‘half-truths’: Mamata Banerjee hits back

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday alleged Prime Minister Narendra Modi is misleading people with half-truth as she referred to the benefits of the Centre’s farmers’ schemes, which the BJP claims the state government is not extending to its farmers.

“Today, PM showed apparent concern for farmers through televised address instead of proactively working to resolve their issues. While he publicly claimed his intention to help farmers of West Bengal through his PM Kisan Yojana… the fact is he is trying to mislead people with half-truth,” the West Bengal chief minister was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. “The fact is the Modi government has done nothing to help West Bengal. They are yet to release even a portion of the Rs 85,000 cr of outstanding dues that includes unpaid GST dues of Rs 8,000 crore,” she added.

Prime Minister Modi on Friday addressed a virtual event to release over Rs 18,000 crore to more than nine crore farmer families under the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme. During the event, the prime minister also raised questions regarding the West Bengal government’s stand on the scheme intended to help farmers.

“Today, I regret that more than 70 lakh farmers in West Bengal have not been able to get benefits of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN). More than 23 lakh farmers of Bengal have applied online to take advantage of this scheme. But the state government has stopped the verification process for so long,” news agency PTI quoted the Prime Minister as saying.

Mamata Banerjee tried to deflect the accusation levelled against her by PM Modi by saying that the Centre should release part of the outstanding dues so that the state can address its issues.

The Trinamool Congress-led government in West Bengal has faced criticism from the BJP for not implementing Centre’s schemes like the PM-KISAN and Ayushman Bharat. Earlier this month, Union home minister Amit Shah during his two-day visit to West Bengal targeted the chief minister and said that her party is paying off extortionists and anti-social elements with money sent by the Centre.

Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar, who has several times over the past year criticised the Trinamool Congress regime in the state, also weighed in on the implementation of the PM-KISAN in the state on Friday. Dhankhar said, “It’s a matter of concern for me that farmers of West Bengal could not benefit from Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi. As Governor, I have repeatedly approached the chief minister regarding this issue but none of my letters was answered.”

(With agency inputs)

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