New Delhi, December 9: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Thursday wrote a letter to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee regarding the army practice which was dragged by her into the controversy. Parrikar expressed his pain over the allegations made by Mamata Banerjee on army practice.
In a letter dated December 08, 2016, Parrikar wrote, "I am deeply pained by your allegation as reported in the media. If only you had inquired with the concerned Agencies of the state government, you would have come to know the extensive correspondence between the Army and the state agencies including the joint inspection of sites carried out by them."
Parrikar further stated that the army is one of the most disciplined institutions of our country and they are very serious about the safety of our country. Army is always concentrated to serve our country. Parrikar further slammed Mamata Banerjee and said the very experienced politician and a very respectful person like you who have served for the people of West Bengal if alleges Indian army then the morale of our army will be downgraded.
He further stated that the kind of allegations made by you (Mamata) will have a negative impact on the workflow of army. Parrikar in letter further wrote that the authorities of army had already communicated to the concerned authorities of state for scheduling the data collection operations against which they have all the proof.
Parrikar further wrote Mamata, that the allegations by you were inappropriate and unnecessary. He also wrote to Mamata that one should be very careful while putting any allegations and asking unnecessary questions to armed forces as they are the pride of nation.
Like to inform you that Mamata Banerjee is protesting against the presence of the Army at toll plazas in several parts of the state, saying the permissions were not taken for the same. She also alleged and termed military work as a military coup.
To which earlier, Parrikar rubbished the allegations by calling it "political frustration". "I am very sad that such routine exercise by Army is being used for controversy," Parrikar told Parliament, adding it was a standard practice. "It is only political frustration."
The defence minister said the Army had rescheduled its exercise after West Bengal police suggested they conduct this on 1-2 December instead of the original scheduled date of 28-30 November. In regard to this matter army also held a press conference in Kolkata, terming the allegations of Army intervention and coup as "baseless".