West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Benerjee, who is no seen as agressive politician raising her finger against preparation of National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP of dividing people on the basis of religion for political gain, had in fact once offer to resign demanding action against illegal immigrants.
She became furious on August 4, 2005, then an Opposition MP in the Lok Sabha, when her motion to hold a discussion on Bangladeshi immigrants to West Bengal was rejected by Speaker Somnath Chatterjee. She protested against it, threw papers at deputy speaker Charanjeet Singh Atwal and even offered her resignation.
The Trinamool Congress leader had then said that the Bangladeshi “infiltration of Bengal has become a disaster now.. and I have both Bangladeshi and Indian voters’ lists.” Her resignation letter, however, was turned down as it was not submitted in the proper format.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has now tweeted about the 2005 incident. Thirteen years later, now Mamata is one of the fiercest voices against the disenfranchisement of 40 lakh people in the draft NRC list published by the Assam government. Her U-turn reminds us of the popular sayings, there are no permanent enemies in politics and that “change” is the only constant in a democracy.