On a day TMC general secretary Abhishek Bhanerjee was quizzed by the Enforcement Directorate in the coal pilferage scam, the party on Friday roasted BJP for allegedly “politicising” the central agencies and turning them into its “puppets”.
The BJP in its turn dismissed the charges as “baseless”.
An angry TMC termed the central investigative agencies as “puppets of BJP” and said it is a matter of shame that the country’s “hallowed institutions have been taken over” by the saffron party’s government at the Centre.
These agencies are actively pursuing BJP’s agenda of “vendetta politics”, it said.
Banerjee, a TMC MP, appeared before the ED during the day in connection with the investigation into the coal smuggling case.
Banerjee, who is the nephew of TMC supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was interrogated at the ED office at the CGO Complex in Salt Lake.
“Central agencies are reduced to being #PuppetsOfBJP. Whenever BJP feels threatened, they unleash these ‘parrots’ on those who have not sold their spine or integrity!” the Trinamool Congress tweeted on its official handle.
The TMC also shared on Twitter a series of videos of BJP leaders when the saffron party was in the Opposition at the Centre attacking the then Congress government and had condemning the politicisation of central agencies. “The BJP is now guilty of the same sins”, the TMC said.
TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh claimed that BJP had admitted that it considers Abhishek Banerjee a “great threat” and is targeting him.
“Their (BJP) top leaders have failed to confront him (Banerjee) politically. So they are misusing ED and the CBI to harass our leader. BJP leaders are announcing the next target and step. SHAMEFUL! #PuppetsOfBJP”, Ghosh tweeted.
He also said that central investigative agencies has been “relentlessly targeting” BJP’s critics and the Opposition with multiple raids and are harassing them.
West Bengal Finance Minister Chandrima Bhattacharya said that the fear of losing the 2024 Lok Sabha election has left BJP scared.
“Fear of losing the upcoming 2024 elections has left @BJP4India deranged! Outcome? They are trying to put an END TO DEMOCRACY by making @dir_ed and CBI mere #PuppetsOfBJP and harassing Opposition while portraying themselves as saints. PEOPLE ARE WATCHING, Mr. PM!” Bhattacharya tweeted.
Reacting to the allegations, state BJP leader Samik Bhattacharya said “If someone has committed no wrong then why is he afraid to face ED and CBI? If he is innocent, he will come out unscathed.
“If anyone has committed any wrong then the law will take its own course,” he added.
The ED has lodged a case under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, based on a November 2020 FIR registered by the CBI that alleged a multi-crore coal pilferage scam related to Eastern Coalfields Limited mines in Kunustoria and Kajora areas near Asansol in West Bengal. The ED had claimed that the 34-year-old TMC parliamentarian was a beneficiary of funds obtained from this illegal trade. He has denied all charges.