Mamata announces 'Khela divas' on August 16; BJP equates it with great Calcutta killings

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Kolkata, Jul 21 (PTI) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Wednesday announced that the state would celebrate 'Khela Divas' on August 16, prompting the BJP to equate it with the Muslim League's Direct Action Day, which began on that day in 1946.

While addressing the TMC annual Martyrs Day rally, she announced that the state government would observe 'Khela Divas' on August 16 every year.

Footballs made by the handicraft department of the state government will be handed over to various sports clubs poor children on the occasion.

''Khela Divas', which will be marked by the distribution of footballs to needy children,' she said.

'Khela Hobe (will play)', she declared, renewing the battle cry she made during the state assembly elections, adding the fight will continue till BJP is ousted from power at the centre.

Taking a dig at Banerjee's announcement, BJP Rajya Sabha MP Swapan Dasgupta said that Muslim League launched its Direct Action Day and began the Great Calcutta Killings in 1946 on August 16.

'Interesting @MamataOfficial has declared August 16 as 'Khela divas'. It is the day the Muslim League launched its Direct Action Day & began the Great Calcutta Killings in 1946.

'In today's West Bengal, Khela Hobe has come to symbolise a wave of terror attacks on opponents.' He tweeted.

The TMC, which was quick to react, slammed Dasgupta for politicising a 'sporting event' like 'Khela Divas'.

'Khela Divas will be observed to promote sports among children and youth for character and nation-building. It is condemnable to see that BJP leaders have stopped to such a level that they are even politicizing it,' TMC state general secretary Kunal Ghosh said. PTI PNT SNS SNS

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