TMC dubs SC decision on Bengal’s plea over CBI probes ‘victory for federalism’

Kolkata: Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Wednesday welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision on the Bengal government’s plea opposing CBI probes in the state without its consent.

Calling the development a “victory of Indian Constitution and cooperative federalism,” Trinamool national spokesperson and former MP Dr Santanu Sen said: “The CBI which was formed in the year 1963, were very much able to prove themselves as the most trustworthy political wing of BJP. They are especially being utilised in the Opposition-ruled states to gain the political benefit of the BJP. In our state in November 2018, the general consent for CBI was withdrawn. It was revoked and it was notified in the Parliament as well. Tamil Nadu, Telangana and 10 other states have withdrawn this general consent.”

“Despite withdrawing the general consent, we have seen that CBI was registering several cases and they were doing investigation against which our state went to the Supreme Court…We welcome this Supreme Court recognition,” Dr Sen added. The ruling party in Bengal has been vocal against the “blatant misuse” of central agencies by the BJP-led Centre allegedly to create undue political pressure on the opposition and undermine democratically elected state governments.

Trinamool in a post on X said: “Truth always wins! This decision by the apex court is a lesson to those who want to undermine a democratically elected state government by misusing Central agencies. Any threat to our foundational principle of federalism will not be accepted. The move also makes it clear that no one can meddle with a state’s law and order for their selfish political interests.”

The Bengal government had raised concerns that the CBI’s move to continue registering cases despite the withdrawal of the consent in 2018 was tantamount to constitutional overreach. Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the Bengal government, reportedly submitted that the Union Government cannot allow its investigating agency to enter the State once the consent has been withdrawn.

Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP Sagarika Ghose on X said: “Supreme Court upholds the rights of the government of Bengal and all state governments. The Supreme Court sends out a clear message: the CBI cannot act arbitrarily in states and enter a state on its own to carry out investigations as the principle of federalism is at stake. Another reminder to the non-biological PM: 240 is NOT the new 400.”

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