Abhishek Banerjee Summoned By ED: Trinamool Congress General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee has been issued fresh summons by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) asking him to join the ED investigation on October 9, said sources. Earlier, the ED had summoned Banerjee on October 3, however, he did not appear at the ED office on that date owing to the party’s MGNREGA protests in Delhi on the same date. Abhishek Banerjee has alleged that it was a “tactic used by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led central government” to squash the protests.
The Member of Parliament from Diamond Harbour Lok Sabha constituency had posted on X, “The fight against the deprivation of WB and its rightful dues shall persist regardless of the obstacles. No force on Earth can hinder my dedication to fight for the people of WB and their fundamental rights. I’ll b in Delhi joining the protest on Oct 2nd & 3rd. STOP ME IF U CAN!”
He had also alleged that the ED was summoning him on the days he had already announced for public programmes.
“Earlier this month, the ED summoned me on a day coinciding with an important coordinating meeting of #INDIA. I dutifully appeared and complied with the served summons,” Banerjee pointed out in an earlier post on X.
The ED had summoned Abhishek Banerjee under section 50 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA). The summons to Banerjee came after the ED carried out raids in the office of “Leaps and Bounds Pvt Ltd” which the agency alleged was “used for making dubious transactions running into crores of rupees” claiming that the nephew of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is the chief executive officer of the company.
The central agency had earlier summoned Banerjee in connection with the alleged teacher recruitment scam in September.
Abhishek Banerjee arrived in Delhi on Sunday ahead of Trinamool Congress’s (TMC) planned protest against the denial of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA) and housing scheme funds to the West Bengal government.
Abhishek Banerjee and other party members were arrested on Tuesday night after they staged a sit-in protest at the Rural Development Ministry office in Delhi. The protest was part of the TMC’s ongoing campaign against the Centre’s alleged neglect of West Bengal.
Banerjee, along with party lawmakers, state ministers and supporters including MGNREGA workers, protested at Jantar Mantar after they held a two-hour sit-in at the Rajghat on Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary before being evicted by the police.
Lok Sabha MP from Krishnanagar Mahua Moitra alleged the Centre is collecting taxes from West Bengal, but not giving the state’s dues.
The TMC alleges that the Centre has been withholding Rs 15,000 crore in dues to the state under schemes like the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and PM Awas Yojana.
The Delhi Police has detained several TMC leaders including Abhishek Banerjee and Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien during the protest.
(With agency inputs)