Mahasweta ‘warms up’ to Didi again

After 10 months of apparent estrangement, author Mahasweta Devi was today seen sharing a platform with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at the inauguration of the Mati Festival in Panagarh, Burdwan.

Mahashweta Devi had openly supported Mamata's call for poriborton in Bengal, but relations between them had soured over time.

"We have got Mamata after 34 years and hope that whatever work has not been done over the last 34 years will be completed by her," Mahasweta Devi said, adding that the Mamata-led government is in the real sense a government for the poor.

Inaugurating "Mati Utshab (Festival of the Soil)", Mahasweta Devi announced that the state would assist Baul artistes with Rs 2,500 each. She welcomed the government's initiative of digging ponds under Jal Dharo Jal Bharo scheme and providing houses to fishermen.

Mamata took up the brush and canvas for Bauls. "I will donate the sales proceeds of these paintings for poor Baul singers," she said.

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