The Mamata Banerjee-led TMC government has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. The party has been accused of post-poll violence against its rival parties. It keeps on indulging in confrontational politics against the Union government. Several TMC Ministers are facing the heat of law. But this time it seems that the flames of criminal cases are reaching the top. It looks like the alleged corrupt deals of the party and its leaders will soon bring them to the doors of Justice. The recent developments are hinting that just like its parent party, Congress, it may slowly become synonymous with Corruption.
Karma pays back with Compound Interest
The troubles are mounting for Trinamool Congress (TMC). Its past deeds are coming back to haunt it big time. According to several media reports, the Central Investigation agencies have found a multitude of incriminating evidence against the ‘corrupt’ officials, leaders and Ministers of TMC. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has been carrying out raids at several locations in connection with the West Bengal School Service Commission (SSC) and West Bengal Primary Education Board recruitment scam.
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After a non-stop 27 hours-long interrogation at his residence, the ED officials arrested former West Bengal Education Minister, Partha Chatterjee in the early hours of Saturday, 23rd July. Additionally, the ED also arrested his Private Secretary Sukanth Acharya in the alleged illegal recruitment scam.
West Bengal SSC scam: ED arrests Partha Chatterjee from Kolkata
— ANI Digital (@ani_digital) July 23, 2022
This is not an isolated event. The ED had found incriminating evidence against the TMC leader and former Minister Partha Chatterjee during a raid on his close associate. This became the cause of his arrest. Earlier, the central probe agency seized Rs 21 crore in cash from the premises of Arpita Mukherjee, a close associate of TMC Minister, Partha Chatterjee. This raid was also conducted in connection with an alleged teacher recruitment scam in the state.
Black Friday for TMC
Friday was also an eventful day in the political circle. In the early hours of Friday, 22nd July, ED officials raided the residences of Bengal Ministers Partha Chatterjee and MoS in the Ministry of Education Paresh Adhikari and several others. In these raids, the agency recovered approximately Rs 21 crore from the residential premises of Arpita Mukherjee. She has been a known face among the party leaders.
During the course of searches, the ED has recovered huge cash amounting to approximately Rs 20 crores from the residential premises of Arpita Mukherjee, who is a close associate of Partha Chatterjee (former West Bengal Education Minister): ED
— ANI (@ANI) July 22, 2022
The agency claims that the seized amount is suspected to be proceeds of crime of said SSC scam. The enormous cash forced the search team to take the assistance of bank officials. Cash counting machines were deployed to analyse the exact amount of cash seizure from the residence of TMC Ministers’ close aide, Arpita Mukherjee.
Apart from cash, more than 20 mobile phones were recovered from the premises of Arpita Mukherjee. The agency officials said that the purpose and use of so many phones are being ascertained. Additionally, the agency seized a number of other incriminating documents, records, details of dubious companies, electronic devices, foreign currency and gold from the various premises of the persons linked to the SSC, teachers’ recruitment scam.
The legal troubles for TMC don’t end there. The Calcutta High Court, in response to several writ petitions, directed the CBI to carry out investigations into the recruitment scam of Group ‘C’ & ‘D’ staff, Assistant Teachers of classes IX-XII and primary teachers.
The ED is investigating these cases under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA). These criminal cases involve the illegal appointment of non-teaching staff (Group C & D), teaching staff [Assistant teachers (Class IX-XII) and teachers in Primary school].
Bhaipo too under the scanner
The principal opposition party BJP has been accusing the ruling TMC of forcing the general public to give cut money. The TMC also has been accused of tolabaji. PM Modi too has made these allegations against TMC Supremo and her Nephew Abhishek Banerjee. The PM has been attacking ‘Bhaipo’ and Mamata Banerjee for scamming money meant for the Amphan cyclone. The ED too has been investigating his alleged role in the coal scam case. Previously he appeared before the ED in connection to this case. His wife too is under the scanner on allegations of corruption. The ED and CBI have questioned Rujira Narula Banerjee in connection with the alleged coal pilferage scam.
With four top leaders of the party or associated with TMC – Abhishek Banerjee, his wife, Partha Chatterjee and Arpita Mukherjee under the dock for an alleged corruption case, the party faces trouble to shed a negative image of being a corrupt party. The agency’s claims of enough incriminating evidence to put the culprits behind bars for these scams are a big cause for worry for TMC. Even if one of the aforementioned gets implicated by the courts, the doubts will strengthen and the party which is already losing the trust of the people will find it hard to remain in power.
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