India / Mamata Banerjee to skip NITI Aayog meeting

The Hindu : Jun 08, 2019, 10:30 AM
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Friday that she would not attend the NITI Aayog meeting scheduled for June 15.

“The States cannot place their views. There is no point in attending [the NITI Aayog] meetings,” she said.

Earlier, she wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who heads the NITI Aayog, setting forth the reasons for her decision.

“I have said this before: the NITI Aayog is not effective. They [the BJP-led government] removed the Inter-State Council that was empowered to discuss the problems of the States. The States cannot raise their issues any more at the NITI Aayog meetings,” Ms. Banerjee said.

“The Planning Commission, founded by Subhash Chandra Bose, was effective… There was space for the States to talk, and it is absent now. Now, they [the Union government] have some agenda, they place the agenda, and we are expected to discuss it. It is unacceptable,” she said.

Ms. Banerjee reiterated the need for all Opposition parties to come together to oppose the use of electronic voting machines. “Now, we hear that two million EVMs are missing. Where are they? In 20-30% of the areas, problems [were reported]. It is a big scandal, and all parties should come together and protest,” she said.