New Delhi: Though the campaign for the seventh and final phase of voting in the Lok Sabha elections 2019 concluded in West Bengal, the war of words between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee over vandalisation of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar’s statue continued until the last moment.

While PM Modi promised to erect a grand statue of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar at the same spot in Kolkata where it was vandalised by ‘TMC goondas’, Banerjee on the other hand, rejected his offer asking,’In the last five years, you (Narendra Modi) could not build a Ram Temple and now you want to make Vidyasagar’s statue?’

“The statue of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar was broken by TMC goondas during the road show of BJP President Amit Shah. Those involved in this act should be given strong punishment,” said PM Modi. He assured a grand ‘panch dhatu’ (made up of five metals) statue of Ishwar Chand Vidyasagar will be installed at the same spot to give a befitting reply to TMC workers.

Rejecting PM Modi’s offer, Mamata while addressing a public meeting for her nephew and sitting MP Abhishek said,”Bengal won’t beg before you. We have enough money to build it. Your goons came here and said ”Bangal kangal hai”. Are Bengalis kangal?” Banerjee made the remarks in apparent reference to BJP President Amit Shah’s comment that TMC government has reduced “Sonar Bangla (Golden Bengal)” to “Kangal Bangla (Beggar Bengal)”.

“In the last five years, you (Narendra Modi) could not build a Ram Temple and you want to make Vidyasagar’s statue? Mamata asked further.

Earlier on Wednesday, in an unprecedented action in India’s history, the Election Commission invoked Article 324 of the constitution to shorten the last phase of campaigning in West Bengal.

Elections to 33 seats have taken place in the state in the first six phases of elections. Nine parliamentary constituencies of Bengal will vote in final phase of Lok Sabha elections on Sunday. 1,49,63,064 electorates will decide the fate of 111 candidates in Kolkata North and South, Dum Dum, Barasat, Basirhat, Jadavpur, Diamond Harbour, Jaynagar (SC) and Mathurapur (SC) seats.