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Govt mollifies Mamata, refuses to back Shah

The Prime Minister’s Office on Wednesday stunned party President Amit Shah ‘rubbishing’ his claim that Saradha scam money was used for the Burdwan blast.

Shah during a public rally held in Kolkata made a statement that Saradha scam money was used in the Burdwan terror blast and hinted at the involvement of Trinamool Congress leaders including state Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. Shah on December 1 at a public gathering in Kolkata had said, “The NIA is probing the Burdwan blast and it is emerging that TMC people had links with it. There is evidence that Saradha money had a role in the blast.

The two probes seem to be converging.” On Wednesday, in a written statement in the Lok Sabha, Dr Jitendra Singh, MoS in PMO, left the party in an embarrassing situation by claiming that the probe has far not found any link to suggest that Saradha scam money was routed to Bangladesh.

“So far, investigations into Saradha chit fund scam don’t show its money being routed to Bangladesh to fund terror activities,” Singh said. The Minister was asked whether the government has sought details of the probe into the Saradha chit fund scam after reports indicated that a part of the money was routed to Bangladesh to fund terror activities. Singh replied that government has not sought details of the probe.

On the context of whether the Saradha chief Sudipta Sen had paid (as per his claim) large sums to several people to influence the case in his favour, Singh said that the matter is under investigation and would not be able to divulge anything in this matter. Sources said, with Singh’s statement, Shah reportedly expressed his annoyance and there are reports that the minister had met Shah at his residence to discuss the ‘goof up’, which has created a major political uproar.

Sensing more trouble ahead, Singh also issued a clarification, saying that no clean chit has been given to anybody. “Nowhere a clean chit is given by anybody as the last sentence reads, matter is still under investigation,” Singh said. Meanwhile, TMC has hit out at the BJP and demanded an apology from Amit Shah. MP, Sudip Bandyopadhyay said, “Amit Shah is a uninformed person, he should have been more cautious. Now he should apologise for the comments.” However, BJP spokesperson Siddharth Nath Singh defended Shah and said, “There is no embarrassment for the party and claim made by him was based on newspaper reports.”
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