Stop using central agencies against us, if possible fight Abhishek politically: Mamata Banerjee

Abhishek Banerjee and his wife Rujira have been summoned by the ED.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is using central agencies against her party leaders, West Bengal chief minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee said on Saturday at a programme to mark the foundation day of her party’s students’ wing.

Earlier today, her nephew, Trinamool Congress national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee and his wife Rujira Banerjee were summoned by the Central government’s Enforcement Directorate in an alleged money laundering case involving coal smuggling. The Trinamool leader who is an MP from Diamond Harbour, has been asked to appear before the agency’s New Delhi office on September 6 and his wife has been asked to appear before them on September 1. Their lawyer, Sanjay Basu, has also been asked to appear before the agency, on September 3. Also, two senior IPS officers from West Bengal – Gyanwant Singh and Shyam Singh – have been summoned by the ED in the same case on September 8 and 9.

Mamata Banerjee challenged the BJP to fight against her and her party leaders “politically”, she said. “Why are you using the ED against us? Against your one case, I have a bagful of cases and information. If you don’t start those cases, we will move court,” said Banerjee, adding: “I can mention the names of a dozen of your ministers who have looted from coal belt of Bengal. I can mention the names of those who have benefitted from Asansol coal mafias. Remember, we know the history of Gujarat, and remember that politics is not for vindictiveness.”

Banerjee said that the coal area is not under the jurisdiction of state departments, but under Central government ministries. “What was the CISF (in charge of protection of the coal belts) doing?” she asked. “Instead of pointing fingers at us, look at what you have done,” she said.

Banerjee also attacked the BJP government at the Centre on the recently announced National Monetisation Pipeline plan, under which the underutilised government assets will be monetised through private participation. “The Central government is trying to sell our country. They want to sell everything off… Can you sell the soil of the country?” she asked.

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