Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee slammed the BJP government on Friday over the ongoing tussle in the CBI and said the saffron party had been misusing the probe agency for political gains by trying to turn it into “his master’s voice”. Reiterating that a state of “super emergency” was prevailing in the country, she criticised the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and alleged that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was trying to communalise the issue.
“The CBI has repeatedly been misused by the BJP. They are destroying institutions like the CBI and the RBI. They are trying to use the CBI for political gains and turn it into ‘his master’s voice’,” the Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo said, reacting to the Alok Verma episode. “The CBI is doing whatever BJP leaders are asking it to do. In the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) too, they have done the same thing,” she said.
Former CBI director Verma, ousted by a high-powered committee, asked the government on Friday to treat him as “deemed superannuated” with immediate effect.
Verma, a 1979-batch IPS officer of the AGMUT cadre, was transferred from the position of CBI Director to that of Director General, Fire Service, Civil Defence and Home Guards under the Home Ministry on Thursday. On the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, Banerjee said, “They (BJP) are passing the bill forcibly as they have the numbers in the House. If someone else comes to power, he might also change it if he has the majority.”
“In Gujarat, they have forced Biharis to leave the state. In Assam, they are trying to throw out Bengalis. If they were really bothered about people, I would not have said anything. But what they are doing is politicising the issue to throw out certain sections of the people,” she added.
Reacting to the ongoing unrest in the north-east over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, the TMC chief said, “We are in touch with the people of Assam and Tripura. We will always stand by the people of this country.” Speaking about the January 19 Opposition rally convened by her at the Brigade Parade grounds here, Banerjee said leaders of various political parties would take part in it.
“So far, I have received confirmation from various leaders such as Akhilesh Yadav (Samajwadi Party), Chandrababu Naidu (Telugu Desam Party), Tejashwi Yadav (Rashtriya Janata Dal) and many others. Leaders such as Arun Shourie, Yashwant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha are also coming,” she added.
Banerjee, who has floated the idea of a federal front comprising regional parties, has been touring the country for the last one year in order to unite the Opposition to fight against the BJP at the Centre.