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Mamata Banerjee blocks Bengal Guv Dhankhar on Twitter, says ‘Disturbed by his tweets’

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

West Bengal: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a press conference on Monday said she has “blocked” Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar’s Twitter account.

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Moments after Mamata’s statement, governor Dhankhar cited the Indian Constitution and said that Article 159 mandates him to ensure that no one in the state “blocks” the constitutional norms and rules of law.

‘Governor threatening state secretary, DGP’

In strong remarks against Dhankhar, Mamata had alleged the governor is threatening the state’s chief secretary and the director general of police.

Addressing a press meet in Kolkata, Mamata said she has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi several times seeking the removal of Dhankhar. “However, no action has been taken so far,” she said.

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Mamata and her ministers have had frequent run-ins with governor Dhankhar on various issues.

The governor has been openly critical of the Trinamool government over issues of law and order and governance and has often used Twitter to convey his displeasure.

‘Why block information to governor?’

Retaliating in equal measure, the governor cited articles of the Indian Constitution and indirectly alleged that the Mamata government withheld crucial information pertaining to the administration of state affairs for two years.

“Under Article 167 it is Constitution ‘duty’ of the Chief Minister to furnish such information relating to the administration of the affairs of the State and proposals for legislation as the Governor may call for. Why ‘block’ information to Guv now for two years ?” Dhankhar asked on Twitter.

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In another tweet, Dhankhar said that Article 159 of the Constitution mandates that he has to ensure that no one in the state can “block” constitutional norms and rules of law.

Mamata vs governor

Addressing reporters on Sunday, Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar said CM Mamata Banerjee is “constitutionally ordained to discharge duty under Article 167 of the constitution to impart information on Pandemic Purchase Scam and other issues.

In his latest attack against the Mamata government, Jagdeep Dhankhar had said that the state of West Bengal is turning into a gas chamber of democracy and he cannot see the “trampling of human rights.”

Asserting that no amount of “insults” will deter him from performing his duties, Dhankhar had said that violence and democracy do not go together.

“I cannot see the hallowed land of Bengal getting blood drenched (in violence) and becoming a laboratory for trampling of human rights. People are saying that the state is turning into a gas chamber of democracy,” Dhankhar had said.

Last week, the governor had described the political condition prevailing in West Bengal as “horrible and frightening”, while alleging that the people of the state do not have the freedom to exercise their franchise fearlessly.

Dhankhar has also accused state assembly speaker Biman Banerjee of transgressing constitutional norms.

While the speaker termed the governor’s accusation “uncalled for”, the TMC claimed that the governor is acting as the “working BJP president”.

The governor has, in the past, accused chief minister Mamata Banerjee of failing to answer his queries on various occasions.

The governor has also alleged his address to the assembly was blacked out twice.

Hitting out at the speaker over this, he had said: “Does he not know Article 168 — governor is number one in the legislature….. I will not withstand such indiscretions and unconstitutional work. The Speaker shall not henceforth blackout the address of the Governor. If he does so, he will face the music of law.”

“It is my duty to ensure that constitution is protected, preserved and defended,” he had said.

Meanwhile, the Trinamool has been mulling to move a ‘substantive motion’ in Parliament against ‘interference by Dhankhar in the running of state affairs.’

The ruling party in Bengal might demand the removal of the governor in Parliament during the Budget Session.

Mamata’s party is also discussing the option of bringing a motion against Dhankhar during the upcoming Budget session in the state assembly, according to party sources.

The party has also petitioned President Ram Nath Kovind against the governor.

Trinamool Congress Member of Parliament (MP) Sudip Bandyopadhyay on Monday said that he has requested President Ram Nath Kovind to remove West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar from the state while Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu was also present.

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