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  India   All India  03 Jan 2017  TMC MP held: Mamata challenges Modi to arrest her

TMC MP held: Mamata challenges Modi to arrest her

Published : Jan 3, 2017, 4:28 pm IST
Updated : Jan 3, 2017, 6:28 pm IST

Banerjee said the party will hold protest on Wednesday in Kolkata over the arrest of Bandhopadhyay.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. (Photo: PTI)
 West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. (Photo: PTI)

Kolkata: Trinamool Congress supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday lashed out at the Centre over the arrest of party MP Sudip Bandhopadhyay in connection with Rose Valley chit fund scam on Tuesday.

She accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of using CBI, ED and Income Tax department against those who raised voice against demonetisation and dared him to arrest her and all TMC MPs.

"I just can't think that Sudip Bandopadhyay, who is our party's leader in the Lok Sabha will be arrested. I also have information that Modi wants to arrest many other TMC leaders like Abhishek Banerjee, Sovan Chatterjee (city mayor) and Firhad Hakim (minister)," she told reporters immediately after Sudip's arrest by the CBI in connection with the alleged Rose Valley chit fund scam.

"I am shocked, but not scared. Let him arrest all of us. I openly challenge him to arrest me. Let me see his guts. He may silence others, but not me. He can't suppress our voice. He can't bulldoze people's voice," she said. "We will fight legal battle in every case," she added.

Banerjee said she will take the legal battle forward and seek justice from the court. “If they think that after the arrest (of TMC MP Sudip Bandhopadhyay) we won’t protest, they are wrong,” Banerjee said.

She alleged that Bandopadhyay was arrested due to "pressure from the PMO" and asked "why should Narendra Modi and Amit Shah not be arrested?

"The party is behind Sudip. He has not done anything wrong. Even if he is in jail, the people of Bengal will keep him in their heart," she said.

The TMC chief also said that it was the duty of the Centre, the Sebi and the RBI to keep a check on ponzi schemes in which they have "failed completely".

"I challenge Modi directly. You cannot do anything because Trinamool Congress is right and you are wrong. You cannot suppress the voice of the people. you have to withdraw restrictions (on withdrawal of cash)... Modi has no clue where this political vidictiveness will take him. We are not scared and will continue our demonstration against demonetisation," she said.

Mamata said, "He (Modi) has got a government... Even I also have a government in my hand. I can also arrest people here who are involved in riots. But I have not done so because I believe in political courtesy."

Reacting to Sudip Bandopadhyay's arrest Union Coal and Power minister Piyush Goyal said if someone did any wrong he would get caught.

"If someone has done any wrong, he will get caught. If someone tries to cover his or her own wrongdoing by baseless allegations.....We never interfered in investigative affairs," Goyal, who is in the city, said.

Banerjee said the party will hold protest on Wednesday in Kolkata over the arrest of Bandhopadhyay.

The Chief Minister will hold a meeting with the party MPs at 5 pm at TMC headquarters.

Also Read: TMC MP Sudip Bandopadhyay held in Rose Valley scam

Bandhopadhyay’s arrest, second in the case after TMC MP Tapas Pal's, came as a big blow to Banerjee.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested Bandhopadhyay on Tuesday after questioning him about his association with Rose Valley Group and its owner Goutam Kundu.

Bandopadhyay appeared before the special investigation team (SIT) of the CBI at CGO Complex in Salt Lake around 10.55 am, responding to the summons to face questioning.

An SP rank officer led the interrogation that lasted for more than four hours. While probing the scam for the last one and a half years, the CBI found that Bandopadhyay took favours from Rose Valley, such as foreign trips and receipt of hefty amount of money, sources said. The sources added that in exchange, the Trinamool MP helped Kundu to run his business smoothly.

Bandopadhyay, however, could not give satisfactory replies when he was asked about the favours, leading to his arrest, sources said.

Tags: mamata banerjee, sudip bandhopadhyay, arrest
Location: India, West Bengal, Calcutta [Kolkata]