Kolkata: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has cancelled his visit to Kolkata on April 23 to attend a meeting on the current pandemic situation in India.
In a tweet on Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he will not be going to poll-bound West Bengal on Friday due to high-level meetings to review the prevailing Covid-19 situation.
Notably, Modi was supposed to address four public rallies at Murshidabad, Malda, Birbhum and Kolkata.
According to West Bengal BJP sources, after several requests from the Bengal chapter of BJP the Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the rallies virtually.
At a time when the number of covid cases is increasing in West Bengal both the Calcutta High Court and special observers of the Election Commission of India were worried for the huge gatherings in the political rallies of all the political parties.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had time-and-again urged the Election Commission to club the last two phases of election in order to break the covid chain. She also urged that she is campaigning as the BJP is not stopping their campaigns.
Soon after the Prime Minister had cancelled his meeting, BL Santhosh, National General Secretary (Organisation) took to Twitter and asked the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to cancel her meeting too.
“Now that PM, HM, National President have curtailed campaign plans, will the conscience keepers of Democracy who are in abundance question why @MamataOfficial is continuing her COVID guidelines non compliant rallies across West Bengal?” read the Tweet.
After Prime Minister Narendra Modi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took to Twitter and said that due to the rapid covid surge she is cancelling all her prescheduled public rallies.
“In the wake of upsurge in #COVID19 cases across the country and the ECI Order dated 22nd April, 2021, I am cancelling all my prescheduled meetings and we will reach out to the people virtually,” read the TMC supremo’s tweet.
However, according to PMO sources, the Prime Minister is likely to chair an internal meeting on Covid-19 management at 9 am on Friday in New Delhi. After the internal meeting Modi at 10 am is scheduled to hold a virtual interaction with all Chief Ministers of states. At 12.30 pm, the Prime Minister will hold a meeting with leading manufacturers of liquid oxygen via video-conferencing.
Meanwhile, after being criticized by the Calcutta High Court Election Commission had issued new guidelines for the last two phases of the poll in West Bengal.
In a fresh new order the Election Commission has cancelled permission for all the roadshows and also mentioned that upto 500 people will be allowed in public meetings maintaining proper social distancing.
Earlier this day the Calcutta High Court had criticised Election Commission stating that the EC is not exercising its power of restricting political meetings amidst the rise of COVID 19 cases.