To boost morale, Mamata camps at CBI office for 6 long hours
KOLKATA: Protesting against the alleged 'illegal' arrest of three of her party colleagues in connection with the Narada sting operation, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee stayed at the CBI's office at Nizam Palace for six long hours. Claiming that the CBI didn't follow due procedure while arresting ministers Subrata Mukherjee and Firhad Hakim and MLA Madan Mitra, Banerjee reportedly asked the Central investigating agency to arrest her as well.
Soon after reaching the office of the CBI's Anti-Corruption wing on the 15th floor of Nizam Palace, Banerjee asked DIG Akhilesh Singh to arrest her as well, protesting against the arrests. According to Trinamool Congress leader Anindya Raut, the Chief Minister told the DIG: "The way they have been arrested without due procedure, CBI will have to arrest me also."
State Panchayats and Rural Development department minister Subrata Mukherjee, the state Transport minister Firhad Hakim, TMC's MLA from Kamarhati Madan Mitra and former Kolkata Mayor Sovan Chatterjee were arrested from their houses on Monday early morning. Subsequently, she decided to remain present in the CBI's office.
She, however, did not give any reaction to the media either during entering the CBI's office in the morning or while leaving its premises around 4.40 pm.
Banerjee's presence in the CBI's office boosted the morale of the leaders, who were arrested and taken to Nizam Palace, and also to the thousands of Trinamool Congress workers, who had gathered to extend support to their leaders.
Sources said Banerjee sat at the CBI office and also monitored the law and order situation so that the spontaneous response of her party supporters protesting against the arrest of four leaders does not blow out of proportion. This comes when the allegation has cropped up against the CBI of "working as a puppet of the BJP-led Centre" and illegally arresting state's ministers in just 15 days time after Trinamool Congress came to power for the third consecutive term with a thumping majority by winning 213 seats.
TMC Lok Sabha MP and lawyer Kalyan Banerjee and Baishanar Chattopadhyay were also present at the CBI's office.
Besides, Rajya Sabha MP Santanu Sen, MLAs including Javed Khan, Debashis Kumar, Ratna Chatterjee and Nayna Bandyopadhyay also turned up at Nizam Palace. Medicine, Urimax 0.4 mg, was brought for Hakim as he was suffering from colitis.