West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh on Thursday questioned the West Bengal government’s claim that the state suffered losses worth Rs 1 lakh crore due to cyclone ”Amphan”, alleging it was a ploy to make money in the name of disasters.
“This is a strategy to make money from these disasters. The CPI(M) had this disease earlier, now it has spread to the Trinamool Congress,” he alleged.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had earlier said the cyclone, which ravaged West Bengal and parts of Odisha on May 20, had caused an estimated loss of Rs 1 lakh crore in her state.
The BJP leader also mocked Ms Banerjee’s demand to declare the cyclone as a national disaster.
“There is nothing called national disaster. The state government should just tell the Centre the extent of the damage caused,” he said.
On the plight of migrant workers returning to the state, Mr Ghosh said there is shortage of food and water for them.
“The migrant workers are facing problems of food and water. This is the reason many of them are agitating,” he told reporters here.
Mr Ghosh said that panchayats should ensure supply of essential items to the labourers, who have returned in large numbers from different states across the country.
The state BJP chief also said there is “rampant corruption” among ration dealers in the state, and many have been arrested in this connection.
“The West Bengal government has the maximum amount of money but the majority of it is pocketed by TMC workers,” he alleging, hitting out at the ruling party in the state.
On the condition of education facilities in the state, Mr Ghosh said “72 per cent” of West Bengal schools function with “only four teachers” while “42 per cent” operate with “only three teachers”.
At the upper primary section, the drop-out percentage is 22 per cent and 21 per cent in the higher secondary section, he said.
“Most of the dropouts are from the Muslim community with which Banerjee has a special affinity,” Mr Ghosh added.
When contacted, a senior TMC leader said the allegations levelled by the BJP were completely baseless.