New Delhi: A day after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee sought explanation from the Centre regarding the visit of the Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) to her state, the IMCT is not being allowed to enter the COVID-19 risk zones for assessment. Also Read - Mamata Banerjee Urges Centre to Share Criteria For Lockdown Assessment by Central Teams
IMCT leader Apurva Chandra said that the team is in the state for the assessment of the COVID-19 from Monday but no team member is allowed any area in the state for the purpose. Also Read - Coronavirus: 'Situation Serious in Mumbai, Pune, Indore, Jaipur And West Bengal,' MHA Tells States
“We came here yesterday morning and since then we’ve been asking the state government to give us support and now it has been more than one day. We have only visited Nabanna and NICED. These are the only 2 places we have visited,” Apurva Chandra said.
The IMCT constituted by the Ministry of Home Affairs to visit hotspots across the country and make assessments, issue directions to combat the spread of COVID-19 in those areas and submit its report to Central government.
He said that the IMCT members have gone to other states like MP, Maharashtra and Rajasthan, and there they are getting full support of state government. They were given the same notice as West Bengal but they have faced no problems.
“We came to Bengal on Monday and our order of deployment also says that the state government is to provide logistic support to us. I have been in touch with Chief Secretary since yesterday, since the time I landed seeking support from the state government to visit the areas,” Chandra said.
He said that the team met the chief secretary last evening at Nabanna and was assured to have a meeting. “But today, we were informed that there are some issues and we will not be going out,” he said.
Following the meeting with the chief secretary of the state, it was revealed that only daily data would be provided to IMCT team but area visit will not be allowed.
The development comes after Mamata Banerjee on Monday urged PM Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah to clarify the intention behind the formation of such team.
She also urged both the ministers to share criteria for the assessment without which she said her government would not be able to move ahead.
“We welcome all constructive support and suggestions, especially from the Central Govt in negating the Covid-19 crisis. However, the basis on which Centre is proposing to deploy IMCTs in select districts across India including few in WB under Disaster Mgmt Act 2005 is unclear,”Mamata said in a series of tweets.
“I urge both Honble Prime Minister @NarendraModi Ji & Home Minister @AmitShah Ji to share the criterion used for this. Until then I am afraid, we would not be able to move ahead on this as without valid reasons this might not be consistent with the spirit of federalism,” she added.