A day after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi, West Bengal chief minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee met Home minister Amit Shah in New Delhi. During the meeting, Banerjee raised the issue of citizens' register, pointing out that 19 lakh people, many of whom were "genuine voters" have been left out of the registry in Assam. She also stated that the exercise was not required in West Bengal.
"Had come here to discuss the 19 lakh people not included in the National Register of Citizens (NRC). They should all be included in it," Banerjee told ANI after meeting Shah.
"He had not said anything about NRC in West Bengal. We discussed only Assam. NRC in West Bengal is not required. Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar had also said that NRC is not required in Bihar," said Banerjee.
She said that Union Home Minister listened to her carefully and assured her of looking into the matter.
The TMC chief had met Modi on Wednesday but said she did not discuss the issue of NRC with him since it was a "government to government" meeting and that they had only discussed developmental issues, her first meeting with the prime minister after general elections.
Another issue that was discussed was that of West Bengal's name change to 'Bangla'. The chief minister made it clear that the state is open to suggestions from the Centre.
"Bengal is open to any 'addition or alternation' on the name change," Banerjee had said. The chief minister specifically mentioned that the meeting was "government to government sans political interferences". She also invited the prime minister to inaugurate a coal block in the state.
Ahead of Thursday's meeting, Shah proposed on Wednesday that there is a need for a nationwide NRC like that in Assam to throw all illegal immigrants out of the country. While Mamata, on the other hand, has issued repeated warnings to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Modi government over any such actions on West Bengal.
At present, BJP is the key opponent of TMC after the former performed exceptionally well in West Bengal during the Lok Sabha elections this year, where the party won 18 seats.
Updated Date: Sep 19, 2019 15:11:20 IST