The External Affairs Ministry on Wednesday dismissed reports that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was denied permission to visit Chicago to attend the World Hindu Conference. Spokesperson of the Ministry Raveesh Kumar said the government did not receive any request for clearance for her visit.
"We did not receive any request for clarification regarding the visit of Ms. Mamata Banerjee to Chicago for the event. The reports about the denial of permission are, therefore, not true," he said in response to a question on the reports.
The West Bengal chief minister on Monday said that because of "an unholy conspiracy" stopped her from visiting Chicago.
“Swami Vivekananda went to Chicago and delivered his speech. I wished to attend a program on Swami Ji at the same hall in Chicago where he had delivered his speech. Consider it as my hard luck, I could not reach that place,” she lamented .
“An unholy conspiracy was going on to stop me from visiting Chicago. It was an invitation from Ramakrishna Mission and I know that the Mission was threatened and pressurized to cancel the program. This incident created a permanent scar in my mind and I was very hurt,” she added.
She was addressing an event at Belur Math, the global headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, to mark 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda's historic speech at the Parliament of the World's Religions held in Chicago.
September 11, 2018, was the day Swami Vivekananda's delivered his most iconic speech in Chicago at the Parliament of the World's Religions. The spiritual leader delivered his speech among a wide delegation, inclusive of 5,000 scholars, historians and religious intellectuals representing the world's most widespread faiths. His speech is said to have evoked a loud applause from the audience.