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Allegations fly thick and fast as political drama deepens in Bengal

Amid allegations and counter allegations being levelled against each other by the leaders of both the ruling Trinamool Congress and opposition BJP inn West Bengal, Trinamool Youth Congress President Abhishek Banerjee on Monday asked all the supporters and party workers to maintain peace and have faith in the judiciary.

Updated May 17, 2021 13:45 PM

Allegations fly thick and fast as political drama deepens in Bengal

The state has been witnessing high drama since Monday morning after the sleuths of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested two Trinamool Congress ministers -- Firhad Hakim and Subrata Mukherjee along with present MLA Madan Mitra and former Kolkata Corporation Mayor Sovon Chattopadhyay in connection with the Narada sting tapes cases, in which several politicians and a high-ranked police officer were allegedly found accepting cash for providing unofficial favours to the company.

Adding fuel to the fire, the main man behind the Narada sting operation of 2016, Mathew Samuel, said on Saturday that while he is happy with the arrests, he wondered why Suvendu Adhikari, who also featured in the sting, has been left out. Adhikari, who was a prominent face in the Trinamool camp then, jumped ship to the BJP in December last year.

While most top Trinamool leaders have voiced their anguish over the alleged illegal' arrests, Abhishek Banerjee has appealed everyone to maintain peace and have faith in the judicial system.

"I urge everyone to abide by the law and refrain from any activity that violates lockdown norms for the sake of the larger interest of Bengal and its people. We have utmost faith in the judiciary and the battle will be fought legally," he tweeted.

Though Banerjee has appealed for peace, many top Trinamool leaders have questioned the legality of the arrests.

Senior Trinamool leader and former MoS for Parliamentary Affairs, Tapas Roy, said, "The Governor doesn't have any jurisdiction to sanction prosecution. It falls under the jurisdiction of the Speaker from whom no permission was sought."

Meanwhile, Speaker Biman Banerjee said, "In the Narada case, the Calcutta High Court clearly asked the CBI whether it had taken permission from the Speaker. The court directed the investigating agency to seek permission from the Speaker. But there has been no communication from the CBI. It is not that the post of Speaker was vacant. I was in my office.

"I don't know, for a reason unknown to me, they went to the Governor who gave them the permission. The Governor cannot give such permission. I think this permission is illegal and to arrest someone on the basis of it is also illegal. The court will take its decision, but as a lawyer I can say that the CBI has not worked legally."

Following the arrests, the areas in and around the CBI regional office in Kolkata turned into a mini battleground with Trinamool supporters pelting bricks and burning tyres in protest against the detention of their leaders.

BJP's secretary in-charge for Bengal, Kailash Vijayvargiya, accused Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the lawlessness' in the state.

In a tweet, Vijayvargiya said, "CM of West Bengal @MamataOfficial who is under oath to maintain law and order in the state is sadly indulging in threatening law enforcing agencies and creating hurdles for the CBI. This is very unfortunate for the people of Bengal #NizamPalace."

State BJP leader Samik Bhattacharya said, "This is an administrative issue and it has nothing to do with politics. The CBI is conducting its investigation and it is up to them to decide when and how they will make their arrests. It is useless to blame the BJP for all these things. We have no role to play. I saw many Trinamool leaders and supporters gathering in front of the Nizam Palace. Given the Covid situation, the leaders should appease the supporters and send them home."

However, Mathew Samuel, the man behind the sting operation that unleashed this controversy, sounded happy with the arrests.

In a television interview, Samuel said, "It was in 2016 when the video came to the fore and from then it took CBI so many years to arrest the people. I was called so many times and I had not only recorded my statement, but also handed over the tapes to the investigating agency. I am happy that these people are arrested, but Suvendu Adhkari is not arrested. He had taken money from me in his office."

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by FreshersLIVE.Publisher : IANS-Media