Trinamool mocks Modi, defends Bengal government replying to EC notice

Kolkata: West Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress on Sunday mocked Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and affirmed the legality of the state government replying to the Election Commission's notice to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee over violation of the model code of conduct. Addressing a poll rally on Sunday in Krishnanagar in Nadia district, Modi slammed Banerjee for "misusing the state machinery" by getting the chief secretary to reply to the show-cause notice that was issued by the Election Commission to Banerjee as the Trinamool chairperson and not as the chief minister. Within minutes of Modi's address, Trinamool Rajya Sabha member Derek O'Brien asserted that the chief secretary had the right to reply as the notice was addressed to the chief minister. "The letter from the EC is a public document. The tech-savvy Modi could have read it even online. It is addressed to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and not the Trinamool Congress or the candidate from Bhowanipore assembly constituency. "So, the chief secretary replying to a letter addressed to the chief minister is in order," said Derek O'Brien, posting an image of the notice on his official Facebook page as well the party website. "Did the prime minister get his facts wrong? Or was he lying," asked the Trinamool spokesperson. The poll panel on Thursday issued notice to Banerjee over her announcement of making Asansol a district and other utterances made at a party rally during the ongoing assembly polls.