Mamata refuses to sit on dais at Vande Bharat inaugural event as BJP workers chant ‘jai shree Ram’

Image Source : @ANI/TWITTER West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee while attending a function at Howrah railway station.

High drama prevailed at Howrah Station on Friday as a visibly annoyed West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee refused to get up on the dais from where the Vande Bharat express to New Jalpaiguri will be flagged off.

Banerjee seemed upset by the loud sloganeering from a section of the invited crowd at the railway station.

Attempts by Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw and Governor C V Ananda Bose to pacify her did not bear fruit, as the chief minister chose to seat on a chair along with the audience.

West Bengal gets ifs first Vande Bharat train

The Vande Bharat Express connecting Howrah and New Jalpaiguri, the gateway to the northeast, as well as several development projects, will be virtually inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday.

The blue-and-white train, which covers a distance of 564 km in 7.45 hours, will save three hours of travel time compared to other trains on the route, officials said. It will have three stoppages at Barsoi, Malda and Bolpur.

The Vande Bharat express with modern passenger amenities is likely to be preferred both by regular passengers, tea industry executives and tourists travelling to the Himalayas in North Bengal and Sikkim. The state-of-the-art train has 16 coaches, including two for drivers.

(With inputs from PTI)

Also Read: PM Modi attends scheduled events in Bengal via video link after mother’s final rites

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