Has CM Mamatas US visit been scrapped under MEA pressure

first_imgKolkata: Mystery has deepened on what prompted Ramakrishna Math and Mission to cancel the scheduled visit of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to Chicago. Banerjee was scheduled to visit Chicago to attend a programme of the Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission on August 26 to mark the 125th anniversary celebrations of the historic Parliament of World’s Religions that had catapulted Vivekananda to the world stage… and to a permanent place in global history. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsAlthough the Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago mentioned in a letter to the Chief Minister that the programme has been cancelled due to the death of Assistant General Secretary Swami Abhiramananda and other “unforeseen difficulties”, it is not clear to many how his death in Howrah could be the reason behind cancelling the programme in Chicago.According to sources, Ramakrishna Math and Mission succumbed to the pressure of the Ministry of External Affairs as Prime Minister Narendra Modi is himself visiting Chicago to attend a programme on the 125th anniversary of the Parliament of World’s Religions that has been arranged by a Hindu organisation. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIn the letter to the Chief Minister dated June 11, Vivekananda Vedanta Society of Chicago President Swami Ishatmananda stated, “We are thankful that you accepted our invitation to attend our programme celebrating the 125th anniversary of the Parliament of World’s Religions, which was to be held at the Art Institute of Chicago on August 26.”Explaining the reason behind cancellation of the programme, Swami Ishatmananda maintained in the letter, “We are sorry to inform you that due to the sudden demise of Swami Abhiramananda, Assistant General Secretary, Trustee of Ramakrishna Mission and member of the Governing Body of Ramakrishna Mission, as well as unforeseen difficulties, we have had to cancel the August 26 programme. We remain ever thankful for your support and regret any inconvenience this may cause you.” It may be mentioned that the body of Swami Abhiramananda was found in the river Hooghly near a ghat at Belur in Howrah on June 8.The Chief Minister’s scheduled visits to China and Chicago were cancelled within a gap of a few days and it prompted political observers to suspect that the developments are not just mere coincidences. Instead, they are conjecturing that there is a “strong enough political reason” behind the cancellation of Banerjee’s trip to Chicago as her visit was scheduled within a few days of Modi’s visit.Interestingly, the Chief Minister’s visit to China had to be cancelled just a few hours ahead of the journey on Friday as “the political meetings at appropriate level” could not be confirmed.This happened despite the fact that External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had a couple of months ago recommended that Banerjee lead a delegation to China under the Union Government’s Exchange Programme with the Communist Party of China’s International Department.So political experts are considering “negligence” in the Centre’s part for “lack of confirmation of the meeting at the appropriate level”.It may be mentioned that the Chief Minister’s Chicago trip has been cancelled when her government has decided to take up character building programmes in schools as a part of the celebration of 125 years of Swami Vivekananda’s address at the Parliament of World’s Religion in Chicago.A programme will also be organised at Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan in which 1 lakh students and youths will be participating.last_img

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