West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee launches scheme to provide meal at Rs 5 to poor people

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Ahead of the West Bengal assembly election 2021, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday virtually launched the ‘Maa’ scheme under which her government would provide a meal at a nominal cost of Rs 5 to poor people. They will get a platter of rice, dal, a vegetable and egg curry for Rs 5, Mamata Banerjee said adding that the West Bengal government will bear a subsidy of Rs 15 per plate.

Self-help groups will operate the kitchens from 1 pm to 3 pm every day and such kitchens will be set up everywhere in the state gradually, CM Banerjee said.

She also said her government is ready to provide financial support to family members of DYFI activist Maidul Islam Midda, who succumbed to injuries sustained during a clash between police and members of Left parties. CM Banerjee said the police has launched an investigation and the exact cause of his death would be known only after the post-mortem examination.

“I do not support any death. A probe is underway… I have come to know that even his family members were not informed where he was admitted. No police complaint was made in this connection, too,” she said at the state secretariat. “I have spoken to Sujan Chakraborty (Left Front leader), and told him that I am ready to provide job and financial support to the family,” the chief minister said.

Midda, who was critically injured in a clash with the police during the Left parties’ march to the West Bengal secretariat on February 11, died on Monday morning. He had suffered renal failure, following which he died due to cardiac arrest, CPI(M) leader Dr Fuad Halim, at whose medical facility Midda was being treated, said.

Banerjee said it is also important to ascertain whether Midda, who is survived by his wife and two children, had any health complication. Student and youth wings of Left parties had clashed with the police during the rally, leading to injuries on both sides. The police lathi-charged, burst tear gas shells and used water cannons to disperse the activists. The Left Front had called a 12-hour statewide bandh on February 12 in protest against the police action.

Earlier, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) West Bengal President Dilip Ghosh has asserted that change will happen and the BJP shall come to power in the state after the elections, challenging Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee. Addressing a public meeting at Harirajpur in West Midnapore during `Paribartan Yatra` from Keshpur to Ghatal on Sunday, Dilip Ghosh said, “Yes, `Khela hobe, khela hobe` and `paribortan hobe` (will play, will play, and will change).”

“Let me tell the brothers of Mamata didi that the BJP will form the government. I know there will be attempts to stop the yatra so I have come to meet you. We will ensure that you are able to cast your votes,” Ghosh said.

He further stated, “Opposition is telling us that our game is over but let me tell them that our game is on. Be ready. Tell mothers to keep their children under control if they want to see their faces after polls. We are civilised and follow the law but it does not mean that we are weak, cowards.”

The BJP is organising parivartan yatras in West Bengal as part of its efforts to oust the Trinamool Congress government. The first yatra was launched by BJP National President JP Nadda from Nabadwip in Nadia district in the first week of February.

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