New Logo for West Bengal Unveiled, Name Change of State on Cards

Image Courtesy: Express Photo Service | Subham Dutta
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee unveiling the State logo at Nabanna on Friday.

Kolkata, January 05: At an inauguration ceremony held at State Secretariat, Mamta Banerjee, Chief Minister of West Bengal unveiled the new logo for the state. The new state logo has the alphabet “B” (for Bengal) written in Bengali script placed in middle in form of a seal, with the Lion Capital of Ashoka (the National Emblem) placed at top.

Along with logo, the West Bengal government is in the process of changing the state name to Bangla.

Describing the moment as historic, the Chief Minister stated that for the first time after independence, the state will have a logo of its own, informing that the logo had been approved by the Centre after being designed in Bengal. She added that henceforth, the logo will be used in official government documents, including letterheads. Incidentally, the logo is the brainchild of the Banerjee, who is an enthusiastic painter and writer herself.

She also stated that the name of the state will be changed from West Bengal to Bangla, and the due process of getting approval from Centre is underway. The CM had also designed the logo for Biswa Bangla, which was exclusively used for promoting the schemes and events of the state government.

However, Mukul Roy, one of the former top members of Trinamool Congress,  now defected to BJP, had alleged that the logo was registered under the name of Banerjee’s nephew, Abhishek Banerjee, an MP himself, reports The Indian Express. The allegation was strongly refuted both by the party and the state government.

Situation worsens in Gorkhaland, Army called again

The volatile situation in Gorkhaland does not seem to end anytime soon, as Army was called in again by the West Bengal government after fresh incidents of torching a police outpost and a toy train station took place in Darjeeling as reported by Firstpost.

Bimal Gurung spearheading the entire agitation led by Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha claimed that two youths were killed in police firing, as a result of which the protest turned violent. West Bengal police denied any such reports. Mamata Banerjee has invited Gurung for talks in order to solve the Gorkhaland dispute, however, Gurung has mentioned that “all gates for talks are closed”. However, GJM is open to talks with the central government. Two columns of the army containing about 100 personnel were deployed at Darjeeling and Sonada after fresh unrest reported Times of India.

Though Army has been deployed, one can see the remains of violence across streets as remains of several burnt vehicles lie there. The police have accused the protestors of using stones and glass bottles while protestors have accused police of firing at “unarmed” people. After this violence there is a little chance that GJM would give upon their protests, however, at the same time, it will surely lead to economic hardships for the people whose businesses have been hurt.

Sources:  Firstpost

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Schools to hail Mamata’s bravado for the Singur’s struggle?

On August 31, the Supreme Court in a landmark judgement decided the fate of the Singur farmers, that had been hanging by a string for the past 10 years. Setting aside the land acquisition by the West Bengal Government in 2006, to allow Tata Motors to set up a factory for it’s Nano project, the apex court, directed the current government to return the land to it’s erstwhile owners within a period of 12 weeks. And buoyed by the SC’s verdict, the state government is advancing to include the topic in school syllabuses now.

This issue has been making headlines for the past few weeks now, with the West Bengal government calling it a “victory of the the people of Bengal”, while the leftists, labeling it to be the hegemonic triumph of Mamata Banerjee, who is said to have acquired power in Bengal riding upon the Singur controversy. Nonetheless, it is indeed a watershed moment for all agitations surrounding the adversities of land acquisition.

The Singur Movement, from 2006 to 2016 has now catapulted into a historic discourse about the success of a struggle of the farmers, which the state government is now pushing to launch as an event to be remembered for generations. And, for that the proposal to include it into school curriculum, is being made by this government.

As per reports, from the 2017-18 academic year, the syllabus of class IX and X will include the Singur struggle. History books would honor and eulogise the farmer struggle to acquire their land, and Mamata Banerjee’s 14-day dharna at Singur along with her fast that lasted some 26 days. Likening it to historic events like the Sepoy Mutiny and the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, the School Education Minister Partha Chatterjee said that a movement where the farmers together fought for a their own cause, despite all adversities, and eventually turned victorious at the end, is worth recognition in the history books, and that students should know all about this. Along with Singur, the Tebhaga movement and Krishak andolan (peasants movement) will be pitched for inclusion.

Earlier the Education Minister mentioned that as the Singur movement has historic relevance, he is consulting with intellectuals and educationists and pushing the proposal to include Singur movement in the Syllabus Committee. Once approved it will be taken forward.

A senior official of the education department, responded to this, saying “These are some of the major incidents that will surely get place in the syllabus but we are still to finalise the details of the movement. We had first round of talks and we need some more discussion before we can give it a final shape”.

With the Trinamool Congress Party gaining ground in the national landscape, this move although seemingly noble, might have a larger yet underlying discourse. The question that arises at this juncture, is that, would a similar mass struggle cropping up around the time of Mamata’s government, get the same recognition, as did the Singur movement, which was largely against the CPI(M) -led government of Buddhadeb Bhattacharya.

Mamata Banerjee to Attend Mother Teresa’s Canonisation Ceremony in Rome

Mamata Banerjee Chief Minister of West Bengal has left for Italy for a week – long trip to Rome and Germany to be a part of Mother Teresa’s canonisation and meet potential investors. She is accompanied by a group of industrialists and a 12- member official delegation.

“At the invitation of Missionaries of Charity, I am leaving for the holy Vatican City to participate in the canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa. Mother was the mother of humanity. Her love for the ailing, the needy and the entire humanity was unbounded,” posted Banerjee on a social media website.

Moreover, she mentioned that Bengal is a proud city as Mother lived and worked there, she has showered people with her generous love and care. Banerjee asks for Mother’s blessings so that she can continue to serve the people of Bengal in the coming years.

The Chief Minister of West Bengal plans to stay in Italy till September 5 and attend a special reception being hosted by the first woman mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi in Vatican City during her visit.

She will then fly to Munich from Rome where she plans to meet German businessmen from the manufacturing sector to pitch Bengal as an upcoming investment destination. Ms Banerjee is expected to return back to Kolkata on September 10.

Source- NDTV, India Today

Mamata Banerjee cries foul as Trinamool MP gets death threat

Kolkata: Citing “intolerance” as a major drawback of a democracy, Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal has alleged that Sudip Bandyopadhyay, a senior lawmaker of the party, has been given death threats for being active and vocal in Parliament.

She said in a statement that she had asked the lawmaker to not step back and write to Home Minister Rajnath Singh, file a police complaint and also raise the issue in Parliament.

Apparent “political vendetta” has led to death threats being meted out, according to Banerjee. In a series of tweets, she has vented out her frustration about the issue. She maintains that “voices cannot be muzzled” in a democratic nation. She added, “If they do not want the opposition to speak, let them impose Emergency. I have instructed Sudip to raise the issue in Lok sabha.”

Sources: http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/mamata-banerjee-alleges-death-threat-to-trinamool-lawmaker-sudip-bandyopadhyay-1257696

http://www.daijiworld.com/news/news_disp.asp?n_id=373538

West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee alleges death threat to Trinamool Congress MP Image source: Deccan Chronicle
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee alleges death threat to Trinamool Congress MP
Image source: Deccan Chronicle

 

Bengal will soon supply surplus power to other Indian states, says Mamata

Sagardighi (WB) : West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday said that her state has become self-sufficient in power sector and would soon be supplying power to other states of India.

After the inauguration of the 500 MW third phase of Sagardighi Thermal Power Plant in Murshidabad district, Banerjee said, “We are developing a power bank. With the addition of new power units total power generation in Bengal will get a boost and we will be able to supply surplus power to other states”.

“The fourth phase of the plant with another 500 MW capacity will come up soon” she added. Currently, the power plant consists of two units operating with 300 MW each.

The 500MW thermal producing unit at the Sagardighi Thermal Power Extension Project of West Bengal Power Development Corporation (WBPDCL) is a coal-based power-plant successfully initiated and commissioned by Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL).

According to reports, another 500 MW unit is close to completion as a result of BHEL’s partnership with West Bengal in power development programmes.

However, Ms. Banerjee opined that inspite of receiving no cooperation from the Centre, her government has managed to increase revenue from Rs.20, 000 crore to Rs.41, 000 crore.Further, she added that her state’s development is getting affected as the Centre “takes away” major part of the revenue.

Source: http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/bengal-will-supply-surplus-power-to-other-states-soon-mamata-115121600743_1.html

 

Mamata Banerjee announced that her state would be soon supplying surplus power to other Indian states Image source: www.aitcofficial.org
Mamata Banerjee announced that her state would be soon supplying surplus power to other Indian states
Image source: www.aitcofficial.org

 

Did Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose survive the 1945 plane crash? : West Bengal Govt declassifies 64 Netaji files

Image Source: indiatimes.com
Image Source: indiatimes.com

“Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose did not die in a Japanese plane crash on 18th August 1945.”

A starring truth emerges. File number 58, out of the 64 files that have been declassified today by the West Bengal Government and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, demolishes the plane crash lie. Published on March 26, 1949, the file clearly states, “…that Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, the great Indian revolutionary leader and head of the famous INA resistance movement, is alive and awaiting the right opportunity to return to his Homeland.” Also, stated in the report is the biggest cover up that has been maintained for 70 years now: “The Plane Crash Story Unconfirmed”

A longstanding demand of the entire nation—his supporters and family largely, was fulfilled today by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who put all the 64 files in public domain at Kolkata Police Museum, in the hope to reach some closure on the mysterious disappearance of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose in 1945. The declassification of the 64 files have surely raised eyebrows due to a number of reasons. It has come up that, between 1948-1968, the Government placed the entire Bose family under scanner. Every single letter that Netaji’s wife Emilie Schenkl wrote to his family members, back in India and vice versa, the Intelligence Bureau sleuths quietly copied, read and recorded the content that secretly went into files of the Bose family, before it reached the original destination of the addressee. His family members were tracked. Their day to day movements, their conversations with the people they met, whether in the country or abroad; were quietly followed by the IB sleuths. This uncannily bears resemblance with the way families of terrorists are kept under surveillance. In the words of grandnephew Chandra Kumar Bose, “Surveillance is conducted on those who have committed a crime or have terrorist links. Netaji and his family fought for the freedom of the country, why should they be placed under surveillance?” He seemed quite shocked at the revelation. Out of the 20 years, that the Bose family was snooped upon, notably for 16 years, Jawarharlal Nehru was the Prime Minister. Regarding the question as to why would Bose’s family be placed under the scanner for 20 long years, former IB Chief B.N Mullick says in his book that, “The PM, had such a moral aversion to this work (espionage) that he would not allow us to operate even against the offending country’s intelligence groups operating from the shelter of their diplomatic offices in India.” M.J Akbar, BJP Spokesperson and an eminent Indian journalist further tries to find a logical reason to it, “The government was not sure that Bose was dead, and thought that if he was alive, he would be in some form of communication with his family in Kolkata. Why would Congress be apprehensive about this? Bose was the only charismatic leader who could have mobilized opposition unity against the Congress, and offer a serious challenge in the 1957 elections. It is safe to say that if Bose were alive, the coalition that defeated the Congress in 1977 would have trounced Congress in the 1962 General Election, or 15 years earlier.”

“Today is a historic day. Our govt has made all files relating to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose public…” tweeted West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee after declassifying those 64 files, adding, “People have a right to know about Netaji, the brave son of India.” She also stressed that the Center needs to declassify those 130 files that it has with itself, as soon as possible, since it would help people join the missing links about Netaji’s death, “I have done my duty by making public all the files and reports on Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose available with us. Now the Union government should publish all the reports in their possession. If you have nothing to hide why don’t you disclose the reports?”  On being questioned, whether the declassification of the files would lead to unruly order in the country, she said, “I don’t think that there will be any law and order problem. It is a mere excuse. If there is any law and order problem, we are there to tackle it,” further emphasizing that it was really unfortunate that even after 70 years of his disappearance, people don’t know as to what exactly happened to him?

Urging the Central Government to declassify the remaining 130 files, Surya Bose, grandnephew of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose recorded, “The files in the Prime Minister’s Office and Home Ministry are also crucial, they should be declassified too. It would have been difficult for former Prime Minister Vajpayee to declassify Netaji files. Modi has the numbers and we are hopeful…Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has done a great thing and now the Centre has no other option but to declassify the files it has…The more important files that can unravel the mystery behind his disappearance are with the central government departments and the mystery can be solved only if those files are declassified.” BJP Spokesperson M.J Akbar replied that the party and Prime Minister are seriously giving a thought to the declassification and things would be done as according to the larger public interest.

The question of Netaji’s death has been haunting, engaging and agitating Indians for 70 long years now. The first step to untangle the mystery has been taken today by the West Bengal Government. Though Netaji’s daughter Anita Bose Pfaff still believes that she lost her father in a tragic plane crash, the declassification of the files that Central Government has with itself, if done, can provide us a whole new history.