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Bengal governor says Trinamool MP 'crossed red line', lawmaker hits back

Bengal Governor claimed TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee "crossed the red line" by criticising the judiciary's decision to order CBI investigations into multiple cases in Bengal

Jagdeep Dhankhar

Jagdeep Dhankhar

Press Trust of India Siliguri (WB)
Claiming that TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee "crossed the red line" by criticising the judiciary's decision to order CBI investigations into multiple cases in Bengal, Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar, without directly naming him, said on Sunday that "constitutional authorities in the state are under attack".
Shortly after, Banerjee, responding to Dhankhar, said he would continue to stand by his statement.
Talking to reporters at Bagdogra airport before leaving for Darjeeling, the governor said, "Constitutional institutions in the state are under attack. The attack on judiciary is reprehensible. In a public meeting, hitting out at a judge who ordered a CBI inquiry into SSC scam is most condemnable."

"The honourable Member of Parliament crossed the red line," he said, without naming Banerjee.
The governor was alluding to TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee's remarks at a rally in Haldia on Saturday where he lashed out at the "one per cent of the judiciary" for ordering CBI probe in "every case" in the state.
Banerjee had said, "I feel ashamed to say that there are one or two people in the judiciary who are in hand- in-gloves and have a tacit understanding and are ordering CBI investigation in every case. This is just 1 per cent of the judiciary."

Earlier in the day, Dhankhar had stated that he was taking a serious note of the comments made by Banerjee and called upon state's chief secretary to urgently initiate appropriate action.
The Diamond Harbour MP, taking to Twitter, said he believed in "speaking the truth".
"I've always believed in SPEAKING THE TRUTH TO POWER. Yesterday, I said how 1% in Kolkata HC is working in cohorts with Centre in protecting some individuals. PEOPLE ARE WATCHING, they know who is actually 'CROSSING THE RED LINE'. I rest my case here! (sic)," he wrote.
The Calcutta High Court has ordered CBI investigations in a number of cases in the last one year, including post-poll violence and a recruitment scam by School Service Commission (SSC).
The TMC, too, hit back stating that the "governor's selective concern for legality in West Bengal exposes his contradiction and detachment from the actual reality!"

"We've always respected the judiciary but will never bow down before central government's active interference in matters favouring its agenda," the party tweeted.
BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar, meanwhile, claimed that attempts were being made by the TMC to demean all the pillars of democracy.
"How can Banerjee question the orders of the judiciary?" Majumdar, also a Lok Sabha MP, said.
Echoing him, BJP national vice-president Dilip Ghosh said Dhankhar did the "right thing".
"Abhishek Banerjee's comments prove he is scared as the judiciary is exposing the monumental corruption by his party. The TMC cannot control the court. Truth is coming to light," Ghosh said.
The development seemed to have opened another front in the turf war between the TMC government and the governor -- underway since he assumed office in July 2019.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: May 29 2022 | 9:58 PM IST

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