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Bengal governor recollects tryst with Mamata 30 yrs ago

'Very kind lady' and 'very gentle-hearted'

By Jhinuk Mazumdar in Calcutta

  • Published 24.09.19, 1:55 AM
  • Updated 24.09.19, 1:55 AM
(From left) Mimi Chakraborty, Usha Uthup, Vishal Jhajharia, president of Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce & Industry; Jagdeep Dhankhar; Sudesh Dhankhar, the governor’s wife; Prapti Jhajharia, chairperson of MCCI ladies’ forum; Anamika Khanna and Chaitali Das, social entrepreneur.
(From left) Mimi Chakraborty, Usha Uthup, Vishal Jhajharia, president of Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce & Industry; Jagdeep Dhankhar; Sudesh Dhankhar, the governor’s wife; Prapti Jhajharia, chairperson of MCCI ladies’ forum; Anamika Khanna and Chaitali Das, social entrepreneur. Picture by Pradip Sanyal

Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar described chief minister Mamata Banerjee as a “very kind lady” and “very gentle-hearted” and recalled the time he had come from Delhi to see her in hospital 30 years ago.

“I interacted with the chief minister of West Bengal… a very kind lady, very gentle-hearted…. I reminded her ‘Madam, 30 years ago you were injured on the head and I was a Union minister.’ I rushed to Calcutta, straightway went to the hospital and she remembered it,” Dhankhar said.

In 1990, Mamata Banerjee, then a Youth Congress leader, was severely beaten up allegedly by CPM cadres. She had to spend several days at a hospital for treatment.

Dhankhar was the chief guest at a Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce & Industry Ladies’ Forum programme to felicitate “Women Achievers”.

“Of course, we both (he and Mamata) are performing our duties to the Constitution,” he said. He was “sure” that “together as constitutional functionaries” they would work for the betterment of Bengal.

“I will live up to every word of the oath that I have undertaken (as governor),” Dhankhar said to applause.

The governor said he had come to Bengal many times in the past but he did not know Bengal then.

“I know Bengal now. Every week has added to my intellectual development. Every week has added to my knowledge…. This place is the cultural fortress of the world. You cannot find the richness of this nature in any part of the globe.”

At The Oberoi Grand programme, he also appealed to the audience to support Narendra Modi.

“If the Prime Minister of the country has resolved that we will have by 2024-25 a $5 trillion economy that is achievable, implementable but only with your support. Each one who is present here, each one who is present here can be the epicentre of this growth.”

At the programme the forum recognised and gave awards to fashion designer Anamika Khanna, singer Usha Uthup, actor and Member of Parliament Mimi Chakraborty and social entrepreneur Chaitali Das. “

“We have to give power to women so that they can become self-sufficient in every possible way, we have to give them the right to choose and a voice to express their opinions authentically,” said Prapti Jhajharia, chairperson, MCCI Ladies Forum (MLF).

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