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BJP misusing CBI, Mamata's response equally undemocratic: Left parties

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Left parties on Monday said while the BJP-led NDA government was "misusing" federal agencies, Mamata Banerjee's response to it was "equally undemocratic" and accused both of sabotaging the probe into ponzi scams.

CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, in a tweet, said the sit-in by Banerjee in Kolkata came within hours of the Left Front's rally at the Brigade Parade Grounds in the city, and alleged that it was also aimed at diverting public attention from the rising protests by the people of West Bengal against both the BJP and the TMC.

In an unprecedented development, a number of CBI officers, who had gone to question Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar in connection with chit fund scam cases, were bundled into police jeeps, whisked to a police station and briefly detained on Sunday.

Hours after the incident, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee began a sit-in right in front of the Metro Cinema to protest "insults" she faced at the hands of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah and claimed the CBI knocked on the doors of Kumar without a search warrant.

The CPI, in a statement, claimed that the bitter tussle between the Kolkata police and the CBI, and the "equally undemocratic response" by the Mamata Banerjee government have put the country in a "civil war-like situation".

"The autocratic misuse of central agencies like CBI, ED and IT departments by the Narendra Modi-led NDA government at the Centre to target political opponents across the country and the equally undemocratic response by Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government to protect the Saradha chit fund scam accused have put the country in a civil war-like situation. It is the responsibility of the centre to resolve the logjam and save the democratic fabric of the country," the Communist Party of India statement read.

"Saradha scam is a very big scam and transparent and independent investigation is necessary to bring the guilty to book. Centre should call for an all-party meeting to redefine centre-state relations," the Communist Party of India said in a statement.

The CPI(M) Politburo in a statement said the BJP government, contrary to its election promises, had not taken action against those accused in the various ponzi scams in the last four years, but was doing so now.

"During this period, many of the Trinamool Congress leaders who were prime accused in these scams like MPs Mukul Roy, and Hemanta Sharma, moved over to the BJP. Clearly, both the BJP and the TMC were sharing the spoils of such a loot, slowing down the investigation as ordered by the Supreme Court," the party said.

It further said against this background, the Centre's action against the Kolkata police commissioner "smacks of political motivation."

"The response of the TMC government and the Chief Minister, given their record of murder of democracy in Bengal, is also politically motivated. The CPI(M) has consistently demanded that the culprits of this gigantic scam must be booked and punished, their properties confiscated and this must be used to return the money looted from the people. This was sabotaged by both the BJP and the TMC," the CPI(M) said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, February 04 2019. 19:55 IST