Trinamool Congress(TMC) on Monday lashed out at BJP for seeking union territory for north Bengal, accusing the party of sowing seeds of hatred in the state.
Earlier, West Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh came out in defence of Alipurduar MP John Barla, stating that he should not be given a "separatist tag" for seeking a union territory for north Bengal.
TMC leader and state’s education minister Bratya Basu, while reacting to the BJP’s stance said the party has "no respect for the history and heritage" of the state.
Alleging that BJP leaders, frustrated over the assembly poll debacle, are making conflicting statements on the issue of state's bifurcation, the education minister also said that the saffron camp "knows well how to sow seeds of hatred".
Barla had in June sought a separate union territory with all north Bengal districts, arguing that the region has barely seen any development over the past decade.
Ghosh, who had initially distanced himself from Barla's remarks, said last week that it would be wrong to call the Alipurduar MP a "separatist" over the demand as he was just voicing the concerns of people.
"BJP MP John Barla had from June 16-June 19 raised the demand for the state's bifurcation by carving out a separate union territory for north Bengal. The party’s state president had on June 22 claimed that he did not approve of the stance,” said Basu.
"In a complete U-turn, Dilip Ghosh said on August 21 that Barla was just voicing the demand of local people. This shows a lack of cohesion," Basu pointed out.
After the TMC registered a stupendous performance in the state polls, several BJP leaders had taken to social media to say that they were in favour of the bifurcation, the education minister noted.
"All these only go on to show that BJP leaders are on the same page," the TMC leader maintained.
Talking about the allegations of underdevelopment in north Bengal, Basu said Uttarbanga Unnayan Parshad was constituted in 2011 for the growth and progress of the region.
He also underscored that Rs 776 crore was spent to ensure all-round development of the state’s northern part in 2020-21.
"A mini secretariat Uttarkanya has been set up in Dabgram so that projects do not get delayed at the state secretariat Nabanna here. It was built to add pace to the development work in the north Bengal," he said.
It was the TMC that accorded official recognition to Rajbangshi, Kamtapuri and Kurmali languages from the region, he contended, adding that the BJP was trying to create unrest in that area.
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Rahul Sinha, when approached, asserted that the BJP has been consistent on its stance, and never supported any demand for the state's division.
He accused TMC of orchestrating attacks on BJP activists in north Bengal and the rest of the state. (With PTI inputs)