Kolkata, Oct 16 (PTI) BJP's West Bengal unit chief Dilip Ghosh said on Friday that the Mamata Banerjee government announced the Rs 50,000 grant for community Durga Puja organisers in political interest and such attempts to use religion for getting votes should be avoided.
Reacting to the high court's direction to the Durga Puja committees to use the grant for the purchase of COVID safety equipment and strengthening the bonding between the public and the police, Ghosh said organisers had not asked for such a dole but it was given with a political purpose.
'We hope that following the high court order, they (the TMC government) will avoid such attempts in the future to use religion in the political arena for getting votes,' he said.
The high court was also moved when the Trinamool Congress government had announced monthly monetary allowance for imams in the state, he said.
Hearing a petition filed by a leader of the CPI(M)- backed CITU, the court directed that the grant of Rs 50,000 to each of the around 37,000 puja organisers cannot be used for any other purpose.
The court asked the puja committees to spend 75 per cent of the grant on the procurement of COVID protection equipment and the rest on strengthening public-police bonding.
Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy said that there is no question of using the grant for political purposes since the community puja organisers are not affiliated with any political party.
He said that if the government thinks fit, it will appeal before a higher court, challenging the interim order.
PTI AMR SOM SOM