PM invokes Goddess Kali, Mahua hits back at him

Amid the controversy surrounding Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra’s remarks on a film poster featuring Goddess Kali, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday invoked the Hindu deity during a speech at an event organised by the Ramakrishna Mission, triggering a fresh war of words between the TMC and BJP.

Virtually addressing the centenary celebrations of 15th president of Ramakrishna Math, Swami Atmasthananda, the Prime Minister said that “blessings of Maa Kali are always with the country, which is moving ahead with a spiritual energy for the welfare of the world”.

“Swami Ramakrishna Paramhansa was one such saint who had a vision of Maa Kali and had surrendered his whole being at the feet of Maa Kali. He used to say this whole world, everything is pervaded by the consciousness of Goddess Kali. This consciousness is visible in the Kali Puja of Bengal. This consciousness is visible in the faith of Bengal and the country.”

The Prime Minister then went on to say: “Whenever I had the opportunity, I visited Belur Math and Dakhineshwar Kali temple. It is natural to feel a connection. When your faith and beliefs are pure, the power herself shows you the way. The limitless blessings of Maa Kali are always with India. The country is moving ahead with this spiritual energy for the world’s welfare.”

With the Prime Minister invoking Goddess Kali, the BJP leaders took the opportunity to hit out at the Trinamool Congress and its MP Mahua Moitra.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks reverentially about Maa Kali being the centre of devotion, not just for Bengal but the whole of India. On the other hand, a TMC MP insults Maa Kali, and instead of acting against her, (TMC chief) Mamata Banerjee defends her obnoxious portrayal of Maa Kali,” tweeted BJP’s IT cell chief Amit Malviya.

Soon, the TMC MP hit out at the PM and Malviya. “Would advise BJP’s troll-in-charge for Bengal to tell his masters to stop commenting on things they have no clue about. Didi-O-Didi got them the boot. Now, Maa-O-Maa will get them a foot on their chest,” Moitra tweeted, referring to PM’s ‘Didi-O-Didi’ jibe at Mamata Banerjee during the last year’s Assembly election campaign.

Senior TMC leader and MP Sougata Roy also hit out at the Prime Minister. “The Prime Minister does not know about Kali Puja. He may have come one or two times to Belur Math or Dakshineswar, but how would he know about Kali puja… Mamata Banerjee has Kali thakur in her residence and she does Kali puja. So, we are not going to take lessons of Kali puja from the BJP,” Roy said.

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CPI(M) MP Bikash Bhattacharya also slammed the PM for invoking religion. “The PM should talk about the Constitution. Instead, he is speaking on a particular religion and invoking God. Our Constitution tells us to safeguard all the religions, and the Prime Minister should echo the Constitution.”

State Congress president Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said the Prime Minister should talk about welfare of people instead of religion. “Chief Minister (Mamata Banerjee) should also talk about welfare and development of the people. Instead of that, both the PM and CM are saying either Ram or Allah. Because they are not interested in the development and welfare of the country,” the Congress MP said.

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