In a veiled attack at the Narendra Modi government, Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay, who was arrested for his alleged involvement in the Rose Valley chit fund case, has said his arrest “was the result of his role in Lok Sabha on demonetisation”. The TMC parliamentary party leader in the Lok Sabha also underlined that there is no reason to be ‘scared’ and this was an ‘attempt to tarnish the image of TMC’ , according to TV report. Casting aspersions over the CBI probe, he said that he did not take any money from Rose Valley. He also claimed that the “investigation is being controlled from higher offices and they (CBI) have sent papers to Delhi.” Bandyopadhyay is the second TMC MP to be arrested in four days. Actor-turned-politician Tapas Paul was arrested in the same case on Friday, and is now in CBI custody in Bhubaneswar.
Bandyopadhyay, who arrived yesterday at the CBI office in Kolkata at around 11 am, was arrested after he was interrogated for over four hours. Speaking to mediapersons before entering the CBI office, he said: “It is normal for me to appear since they have summoned me. I was asked to appear today, so I am here. Moreover, I would also like to know on what basis I have been charged.”
Stung by the arrest of her party MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of using the CBI, ED and Income Tax department against those who raised their voice against demonetisation, and dared him to arrest her. She asserted that their protest against demonetisation would continue. “I just can’t think that Sudip Bandyopadhyay, who is our party’s leader in the Lok Sabha, would be arrested. I also have information that Modi wants to arrest many other TMC leaders like Abhishek Banerjee, Sovan Chatterjee (city mayor) and Firhad Hakim (minister),” she said.
“I am shocked, but not scared. Let him arrest all of us. I openly challenge him to arrest me… He may silence others, but not me. He can’t suppress our voice. He can’t bulldoze people’s voice,” she said. “We will fight a legal battle in every case,” she said.
She alleged that Bandyopadhyay was arrested due to “pressure from the PMO” and asked “why should Narendra Modi and Amit Shah not be arrested?” The TMC supremo convened an emergency meeting to chalk out the party’s action plan. “The party is behind Sudip. He has not done anything wrong. Even if he is in jail, the people of Bengal will keep him in their heart,” she said.
“I challenge Modi directly. You cannot do anything because Trinamool Congress is right and you are wrong. You cannot suppress the voice of the people. You have to withdraw restrictions (on withdrawal of cash)… Modi has no clue where this political vidictiveness will take him. We are not scared and will continue our demonstration against demonetisation,” she said.
“He (Modi) has a government… I also have a government in my hand. I can also arrest people here who are involved in riots. But I have not done so because I believe in political courtesy,” she said.