Advertisment

TMC urges EC to restrain central agencies from action against opposition till Lok Sabha polls

author-image
NewsDrum Desk
New Update

New Delhi, Apr 1 (PTI) The Trinamool Congress on Monday urged the Election Commission to immediately restrain central agencies like the ED, CBI, Income Tax Department and NIA from taking action against candidates, leaders and workers of the Trinamool Congress and other parties opposed to the BJP till the conclusion of Lok Sabha elections.

Advertisment

A delegation of TMC leaders that included Derek O'Brien, Dola Sen, Saket Gokhale and Sagarika Ghose met the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners and submitted a memorandum alleging misuse of central agencies by the BJP against the opposition parties.

They also urged the poll panel to transfer the directors of ED, CBI, I-T department and the NIA to ensure a level playing field for political parties in the Lok Sabha elections.

The TMC leaders cited incidents where central agencies have taken action against their party candidates.

Advertisment

"Yesterday every single opposition party agreed and a resolution was passed (at INDIA bloc rally) that there is unprecedented and biased action by central agencies. We have seen a surge in actions by central agencies," Gokhale said after the meeting.

"This is all being done at the behest of the ruling party... Why has not a single official from central agencies been transferred? Why is it limited to state government officials?" he said and urged the poll panel to pause the action of agencies to ensure a level playing field in elections.

The list mentioned Mahua Moitra's office being raided by the CBI, ED summons to her and Chandranath Sinha, West Bengal's Minister-in-Charge of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and Textiles, income tax raid on Jui Biswas, Councillor of Kolkata Municipal Corporation, and the arrest of a number of TMC workers by the NIA in West Bengal.

Advertisment

"Not only do AITC candidates have to contest the elections, but outside hindrances, like the ones mentioned above, are an ongoing battle they have to face.

"The assurance of the Election Commission of India to provide a level playing field is being compromised at every step," the memorandum submitted by TMC claimed.

If workers at the local level are "hauled up on an everyday basis, then they have no time and energy left to carry out their prior political engagements. Such deliberate roadblocks instigated by the central departments/agencies have only one beneficiary, i.e., the ruling dispensation at the Centre", it said.

The party said it looks to the Election Commission to ensure a level playing field. "This must be done to protect the basic structure of the Constitution," the leaders said. PTI AO RT

Advertisment
Subscribe