New Delhi, December 2: Countering allegations of TMC party and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, who called army exercises in State as Military coup, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar answered the session on the Lok Sabha informing that the drill was a routine exercise not any unique thing done to West Bengal.
The Defence Minister also said the he was shocked on the words of the CM Mamata Banerjee and showed concerns for suspecting Army and its activities. "It is shocking that a Chief Minister is saying this. He called the Trinamool’s reaction to the incident as merely a political frustration and condemned the allegations of any ‘Army coup’.Amid the shouts of TMC leaders over the issues, Parrikar rubbished any charges like creating emergency like situation and executing exercise without consent and said that it a normal routine which is carried out every year. “The Army's deployment was part of routine exercise which has been going on for several years, which has been going on for last 15-20 years. Even last year it was held on November 19 to 21," said Parrikar.
Parrikar also informed that originally the exercise was planned for November 28-30 but was shifted to December 1 and 2 at the request of Kolkata Police. The former dates were clashing with the protests against demonetization, which is a new political issue creating by Mamata Banerjee against the government.
Defence Minister also informed in Lok Sabha that routine exercise not unique to West Bengal and that similar operations to collect information on heavy vehicle movement that can be used during national emergencies had last month being conducted in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand. “Along with West Bengal, similar exercise was carried out in Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura, Meghlaya and Mizoram”, he said while responding to TMC and Congress MPs.
When Army was deployment in various points in West Bengal as a part of routine exercise on Thursday, the State CM Mamata Bannerjee and other TMC leaders like Sudip Bandyopadhyay and Derewk O’ Brian called it as an action of Miliraty coup and emergency like situation. CM Banerjee also did not move from her office and demanded Army to be withdrawn. TMC leaders termed the exercise as an action by Central Government against them. However, Army heads and Eastern command denied any charges and said that it was routine exercise which is conducted every year.