'BJP misusing probe agencies': Mamata Banerjee in letter to Opposition
West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee has written a letter to all opposition leaders and chief ministers of non-BJP ruled states, accusing the BJP-led Centre of misusing central agencies. Terming it as an attack on democracy, Mamata called upon all the opposition parties to unite against the Centre and hold it "accountable for its actions".
Why does this story matter?
This is not the first time that Mamata has raised the issue of misuse of central agencies. Notably, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) are investigating several cases, including the Saradha chit fund scam, Narada sting case, coal scam, etc. which are related to Bengal. Most of these cases are allegations of complicity of leaders of the ruling Trinamool Congress.
What does the letter read?
"I am writing to you to express deep concern over direct attacks on this country's institutional democracy by the ruling BJP," Mamata wrote in the letter. "Central agencies such as the ED, CBI, Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and the Income Tax Department are being used to target, harass and corner political opponents across the country for vendetta," she added.
'Blatant violation of Supreme Court orders'
"During the recently-concluded Winter Session, Parliament bulldozed through the Delhi Special Police (Amendment) Bill 2021 as well as the CVC (Amendment) Bill 2021, in the midst of an Opposition walkout," Mamata wrote. She added that these laws enable the Centre to extend the tenure of the directors of ED and CBI up to five years in "blatant violation" of a previous Supreme Court judgment.
BJP influencing a section of judiciary: Mamata
Mamata further alleged that the BJP is trying to influence a section of the judiciary. "BJP is trying to attack the federal structure of this country by attempting to influence a certain section of the judiciary. As the Opposition parties, it is our constitutional responsibility to hold this government accountable for their actions, to resist the stifling of voices of dissent," she wrote.
Mamata calls for Opposition meet
Mamata also called upon the Opposition to be united in the fight against the BJP. She urged all the leaders of opposition parties to hold a meeting so that the way forward and strategy can be discussed.
Mamata wrote a similar letter last year
The TMC chief had written a similar letter during the run-up to the West Bengal Assembly elections last year, asking the opposition parties to unite forces against the BJP. Recently, the Centre had sought opinions from the states over proposed amendments to the IAS rules, following which, Mamata shot off another letter asking the non-BJP ruled states to oppose the move.