Even as she spoke at Amodpur, in Delhi, opposition parties, including her Trinamool Congress, opposed the bill in its current form in Rajya Sabha and demanded it be sent to a select committee. Rajya Sabha was adjourned without the bill being passed.
"The BJP is doing politics on the issue. BJP is trying to misguide Muslim women for its own gain," Ms Banerjee said. "We have always backed women in Bengal... BJP is trying to provoke trouble," she added.
In the Lok Sabha, the Trinamool Congress was reported to have remained non-committal during the passage of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights) Bill 2018 on Friday. But in Rajya Sabha today, Trinamool lawmakers led by Derek O'Brien vocally opposed it.
On Monday, members of the West Bengal subcommittee of the Muslim Personal Law Board held a press meet in Kolkata and said they were campaigning with MPs to oppose the bill. If it passed in Rajya Sabha, the law board would go to court.
On the eve of placing the bill in Lok Sabha, Law Minister Ravi Shankar phoned Mamata Banerjee to seek her support for the bill but had got no assurance.
"We have Kanyashree (a programme for education of the girl child). Our budget is Rs 5,000 crore," she said, and added, "The centre's budget for its Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme, is just Rs 100 crore across India."
Ms Banerjee said Bengal was traditionally pro-women and widow remarriage was started in this state. The practice of sati and child marriage was stopped in this state too.
"We do not believe in BJP's version of religious politics. We are not atheists like the CPI(M). We believe in Sarva Dharma Samannaya. We respect all religions equally. We worship Maa Durga, we also celebrate Eid. I attend the midnight mass on Christmas as well as attend the Gurpurab celebrations," she said.
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