Alleging that the Left Front during its tenure in power in West Bengal had done little for development, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Tuesday that what it had left behind instead was “garbage” that will take time to clear.

 The United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre was criticised for taking away much of the State’s earnings as interest on the debt the previous government in the State had accrued.

Despite the financial constraints her government faced, “I will not let the poor starve,” Ms. Banerjee told a rally in the Ilambazar area of Birbhum district.

As for her charge against the Left Front and its legacy in the State, she said: “It will take time to clear the garbage that has piled up in 35 [read 34] years.” Birbhum had been “neglected for long” by earlier Left Front governments and she was trying her utmost to usher in development there, the Chief Minister said.

Anubrata present

The district committee president of the ruling party Anubrata Mondal, who recently courted controversy by threatening to cut off wrists of Congress workers, was also present on the dais. Claiming “there is not a single place in Birbhum where the people have not received any government benefit for a long time,” Ms. Banerjee said “one lakh youth of the district will get jobs in the industrial belt to come up around the coal block.”

She also announced several industrial projects that will come up in the district. Ms. Banerjee also announced the State government’s decision to “provide rice at Rs. 2 per kg to the tribal families in seven blocks of the district from December 1.”

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