JP Nadda claims Covid-19 vaccination lowest in Bengal; TMC hits back

By PTI
KOLKATA: BJP president J P Nadda on Tuesday attacked Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, alleging that Covid-19 vaccination is lowest in West Bengal and fake inoculation camps are being organised here, drawing a sharp retort from the TMC which claimed that the Centre has failed to provide an adequate number of vaccines to the state.

Nadda also claimed that “organised post-poll violence” is taking place in the state and though it has a woman chief minister, women are facing atrocities.

“If you see the data, the vaccination is lowest in West Bengal as compared to rest of the country,” the BJP chief said, without elaborating.

According to a central government website, altogether 2.14 crore vaccine doses, including 48.64 lakh second jabs, were administered in the state till 9 am on Tuesday.

West Bengal’s population is approximately 9.13 crore, a state government portal said.

“This is the only state where you would see fake vaccination camps are being run. We have never heard about fake vaccination. Even TMC MP Mimi Chakraborty got a jab of the fake vaccine,” he said.

Several persons, including the mastermind, were recently arrested for organising dubious camps in Kolkata where people were administered fake vaccine doses.

“The TMC government and corruption are synonymous. If there can be corruption on even Covid-19 vaccines, it is happening in West Bengal. This is shameful,” he said.

Nadda alleged that Banerjee, also the Trinamool Congress supremo, is “changing her version” every other day on the vaccination programme, and the state government has failed in the process, though the Centre is providing free vaccines to states.

“Mamataji first questioned the vaccination process.

Then she asked the Centre to allow the states to conduct their own vaccination programmes and buy vaccines.

But as she failed miserably, it was then Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced free vaccination,” Nadda said.

Denying the BJP president’s accusations, TMC state general secretary Kunal Ghosh claimed that the Centre’s vaccination programme is in a “mess and it has failed to provide an adequate number of vaccines to Bengal”.

The BJP president is addressing virtually the first executive committee meeting of the party’s state unit after the assembly polls.

The post-poll violence clearly reflected the failure of the state administration, Nadda said.

Aadhaar cards and ration cards of BJP workers have been taken away and the police have remained a mute spectator, he alleged.

“All of this happened under a woman CM. A lot of atrocities have been faced by women. If women are not safe, what sort of governance are the people of West Bengal getting from the TMC?” he asked.

Claiming that there was no post-poll violence in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Assam and Pondicherry where assembly elections were held along with West Bengal, Nadda said, “Violence did not take place as a party like the TMC was not present in those states. Where there is the TMC, there is violence.”

While BJP offices in two places were burnt down, properties of over 1,300 party workers were destroyed in the post-poll violence in the state, he alleged.

Without mentioning the BJP’s failure to achieve its much-hyped target of winning the state assembly election, Nadda exuded confidence that in the next five years, the party will take a big leap and will form the government in the next polls.

The BJP had claimed it would win over 200 seats in the polls held in April-May but it managed to get 77.

The Trinamool Congress stormed back to power for the third consecutive term winning 213 seats in the 292 seats where elections were held.

“The BJP has covered a long distance in Bengal in a very short span of time. We had won just two Lok Sabha seats in 2014 and had got 18 per cent votes. In 2016 assembly polls, we had won just 3 seats and secured 10.16 per cent vote share. This time we had won 77 seats,” he said.

The ruling TMC in Bengal, however, rejected the allegation of post-poll violence.

“J P Nadda should first calculate the ratio of his visit to the state and the number of seats his party has got. Then they will get to know that Bengal has rejected them. The allegations they are levelling of post-poll violence and vaccination is nothing but signs of frustration after facing such a defeat,” Ghosh said.

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