Don't deposit money, bankers will steal it: Jharkhand CM Soren
Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren has ruffled some feathers yet again with his latest controversial remarks. Addressing a public meeting in Ramgarh on Friday, he advised tribals and the poor to keep their money in sacks, plastic bags, and boxes and bury them underground rather than depositing it in banks. Soren was campaigning for Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) candidate Bajrang Mahto ahead of Ramgarh's bypolls.
Why does this story matter?
- Hemant's remarks allude to the ongoing Adani Group scandal, in which the conglomerate has been accused of misappropriating public funds and laundering money with political backing.
- Since the alleged exposé by the United States-based short-seller Hindenburg Research, the opposition has called for action against the Gautam Adani-led conglomerate, citing the exposure of the government-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) and State Bank of India (SBI).
What exactly did Soren say?
"From the very beginning, I have told farmers and laborers that you should not deposit your money in the bank because the banks are continuously running into losses," Soren said, targeting PM Narendra Modi's government. "Fill the money in plastic and bury it in the ground, but don't keep it in the bank. Never know when the bankers will run away with your money."
Under Soren's rule, illegal sand, coal mining rampant: BJP
Following Soren's controversial remarks, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) hit back at the chief minister. Speaking to CNN-News18, former Jharkhand CM Raghubar Das said, "Since the Hemant government has come to power, there is a loot in land resources, natural resources and 'Jal Jungle Zameen.'" "Illegal sand and coal mining is rampant... Such remarks are unconstitutional from a chief minister," Das added.
Soren summoned by ED in illegal mining case
As for the BJP's allegations of corruption against Soren, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), accused of being a pawn to the BJP, previously summoned Soren multiple times in an illegal mining case. Last year, the agency arrested Soren's aides, Pankaj Mishra, Bachhu Yadav, and Prem Prakash. The ED's chargesheet claimed that Mishra "controls" an illegal mining business in Soren's Assembly constituency (Barhait) through his associates.
Cheques signed by Soren found at Mishra's residence: ED
The ED further claimed to have recovered Soren's passbook and cheques signed by him from Mishra's residence. In the illegal mining case, the ED has allegedly identified proceeds of crime (POC) relating to the case worth over Rs. 1,000 crore. Soren is accused of extending a mining lease of a stone quarry to himself while holding public office in violation of the electoral law.