Kolkata: The CPI(M) on Wednesday alleged that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's district tours were aimed at political mileage before the panchayat election and should be scrapped as it was wasteful expenditure.
    
"Though the idea behind district tours to review and assess progress of work is good, it appears that the Chief Minister is mixing party work and that of the administration," Leader of the Opposition Suryakanta Mishra belonging to the CPI(M) said.
    
Stating that the district tours had yielded nothing worthwhile in last 15 months of Trinamool Congress rule in the state, he said "Lakhs of rupees are being spent in the chief minister's district tours where nearly the entire cabinet and bureaucrats are taken."
    
Without naming the Railway minister, the CPI(M) leader questioned the necessity of a union minister accompanying the chief minister on her district tours.
    
"I would like to request the chief minister to consider if this exercise can be discontinued since the huge expenses involved is a cause of worry," he said.
    
Mishra said that while the chief minister spoke of development and cooperation, she did not invite the CPI(M) or Congress at meetings in the districts which was unfortunate.
    
To a question, Mishra said that former chief minister Jyoti Basu believed in holding mini-secretariat meetings in the districts, "but that was different from what is happening in the new regime."

(Agencies)

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