West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today stepped up her attack on Narendra Modi saying...
Rejecting the demand for sacking Transport Minister Madan Mitra arrested in Saradha scam case, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today stepped up her attack on Narendra Modi saying “if image is a proof of criminal conspiracy, then the Prime Minister should be arrested for Sahara scam.”
Appparently referring to photos of Mitra sharing the dais with Saradha Group chairman Sudipata Sen, who is now in judicial custody in connection with the scam, at a function, Banerjee said “if an image is a proof of criminal conspiracy, then the PM should be arrested for Sahara scam.
“There are photos of several CPI-M leaders with chit fund owners. There are photos of the PM with the Sahara chief. Should we demand that CBI arrest PM Narendra Modi? Banerjee told a rally of TMC workers here.
She said she would not fire Mitra as minister in the wake of his arrest and added that for the time being she will oversee the departments held by him.
Banerjee said Trinamool MPs would stage protests in parliament from Monday against the arrest of Mitra.
She charged CBI’s image has been “dented” and it has been turned into a “political tool.”
“CBI has lost all credentials. It has become His Master’s Voice. CBI has become a political tool. It is time to wind it up. TMC MPs will protest in Parliament from Monday (December 15) against BJP’s politics of vendetta,” she charged.
“Stay within your limits or face the music,” she warned BJP and the Centre and added “people of Bengal will not tolerate insult. They (BJP) are arrogant because they are in power.”
In keeping with her street-fighter image, Banerjee hit the road along with thousands of partymen, including ministers and several sportspersons in a protest march against the arrest.
Banerjee defended Mitra and said “I do not believe that Madan is a thief or dacoit. His family pecuniary condition is not such that he had to take this money (from Saradha ponzi group) to sustain his family.”
The chief minister said Mitra, a key party organiser and also state Sports Minister, was called as a “witness” to the CBI office and was arrested hours after and claimed this was done following a phone call from Delhi.
“His (Mitra’s) son, who met him after the arrest, was told by Madan that CBI officials were just interacting with him and asking him as to which school and college he had studied in. At this stage, a phone call came from Delhi, following which he was arrested.
“Madan was called as a witness. If after being called as a witness, one gets arrested this way then no one will go to depose as witness,” Banerjee said.
Referring to TMC’s strength in Parliament, Banerjee said two or three of its MPs have been arrested in connection with scam so that it cannot use its full strength to cast votes against the central government.
Accusing BJP of playing politics of vindictiveness, she warned “it will boomerang on you when you will be out of power.”
“I must tell those who are in power – stay within your limits or you will face the music … Governments come and go, democracy remains forever. Those in power in Delhi must remember that,” the TMC supremo said.
“I am now in a position (as chief minister). If I had not been in this position, I would have pulled out the tongue,” Banerjee said without elaborating.
“One BJP leader (Siddharth Nath Singh) and warned they will arrest Madan (Mitra) in 2014, Mukul (Roy) in 2015 and Mamata (herself) in 2016. What audacity ! We will see who stands where (in the elections).”
She asked party cadre to politically fight BJP. “They are trying to start riots in the state. We will never let them make this possible. What will happen if we (the state government) start arresting them ?
CPI-M reiterated its demand of questioning Banerjee in connection with the Saradha scam and termed her challenge to CBI to arrest her as “unconstitutional.”
“She has challenged the Supreme Court’s directive to CBI to probe the Saradha scam … Being the chief minister of a state, how can she do this ? This is against Constitution… We are ashamed of this,” Leader of Opposition in the state Surkyakanta Mishra said at a rally here.