India should have 4 rotating capitals: Mamata Banerjee
KOLKATA, Jan 23: India should have four "rotating capitals" instead of the one, and parliament sessions should alternate between major cities, Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said Saturday during an event to celebrate the 124th birth anniversary of the legendary Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
"I believe India must have four rotating capitals. The English ruled the entire country from Kolkata. Why should there be only one capital city in our country," said Mamata Banerjee. "Parliament sessions... why only in Delhi? In Delhi everyone is an outsider," she said.
"I say sessions of parliament should be held in different cities across the country in turn. We are not parochial... we are saying this (for) everyone. Why not a session in Andhra Pradesh or Tamil Nadu or Kerala... why not one in Uttar Pradesh or Punjab or Rajasthan or Madhya Pradesh? Why not one in Bihar, Odisha or Bengal... in Kolkata. Why not one in the northeast?" she added.
With the focus today squarely on Netaji - the ruling Trinamool and the opposition BJP are locked in a bitter squabble over who better honours him - Ms Banerjee also attacked the centre for deciding to build a new parliament but failing to construct a memorial for the freedom icon.
"You are building new parliament (Rs 20,000 crore on the Central Vista project) and buying new planes (Rs 8,000 crore on custom-built Boeings) ... why no memorial for Netaji?" she asked.
Mamata has repeatedly attacked the BJP as "outsiders" - with special emphasis on "people coming from Gujarat" - ahead of Bengal Assembly elections.
In December she took on the BJP over its pre-election promise to turn Bengal into Gujarat and responded: "The soil of Bengal is the source of life. We have to protect this soil... no one who can come from outside and say this place will be turned into Gujarat."
A month before that she hit back after the BJP, in preparation for its Bengal campaign, created five organisational zones and put central leaders in charge of each. "There is no place for outsiders in Bengal. Those who come to the state only during elections and try to disturb peace of the state are not welcome," Mamata said.
The Bengal Assembly election has seen the Trinamool and BJP attacking each at every opportunity. -PTI