Put guilty in jail, I never backed graft: Didi on Partha Chatterjee's arrest


KOLKATA: Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee Monday broke her silence on cabinet colleague Partha Chatterjee‘s arrest, saying neither Trinamool nor her government had anything to do with the corruption charges levelled against him or the cash stash of Rs 21.9 crore seized from his “close associate” Arpita Mukherjee. She demanded a speedy, time-bound probe to unmask the guilty and put them “behind bars for life”.
Decrying alleged attempts to drag her name into the muck, Mamata said Trinamool, of which Chatterjee is the secretary general, and the government would “accept” the judicial verdict in the case, irrespective of which way it goes. “We won’t interfere even with the harshest of verdicts,” she said at the official event at Kolkata’s Nazrul Mancha to confer the Banga Bibhushan awards.

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The CM objected to what she termed “reprehensible attempts by BJP and CPM” to stoke a “media trial” in the case.
Her reaction came after claims that Chatterjee’s arrest memo had mentioned her by name under the column “relatives/friends”. The minister had said on the day of his arrest that he tried to contact Mamata, but his calls went unanswered. The four calls to Mamata mentioned by the opposition as having been recorded in the arrest memo — two of them on Facetime — were made between 2.32 am and 9.35 am on Saturday. TMC termed the allegations “unwarranted and uncalled for”, saying the law provided for an accused to make calls to a relative or friend to inform them about their arrest.
Mamata said all attempts to intimidate her would be futile, for hers was a “party of the people”. She also served a warning to her rivals, “Please do not play with fire. If anyone has done something wrong, prosecute him. But do not touch me. I know how to fight back, for I have done nothing wrong. Take three months, but get to the bottom of the SSC scam. Use fast-track courts, bring out the truth. Whether it is fact or rumour also needs to be probed.” Mamata took offence at her pictures being circulated online alongside the cash hoard seized from the city home of actor-model Arpita.
“My photographs are being shown alongside mounds of cash seized from a woman’s house,” she said. “BJP and CPM leaders should remember that I, too, know all about the skeletons in their closets. Shall I also bring out photos of your leaders?”
The CM said merely visiting a Durga Puja of which Chatterjee is the chief patron didn’t prove anything.





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