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TMC moves Election Commission over Sandeshkhali raid, alleges BJP conspired with CBI, NSG
Photo Courtesy: File photo from Facebook/Mamata Banerjee

TMC moves Election Commission over Sandeshkhali raid, alleges BJP conspired with CBI, NSG

| @indiablooms | 27 Apr 2024, 03:42 pm

Kolkata/IBNS: The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Saturday moved the Election Commission of India (ECI) against the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the National Security Guard (NSG), alleging that the Central probe agency along with the security forces carried out "an unscrupulous raid at an empty location in Sandeshkhali on poll day to tarnish the image of the Mamata Banerjee-led party during the Lok Sabha elections."

TMC in its complaint said, "Though 'law and order' is a domain falling completely within the ambit of the state government, CBI did not issue an actionable notice to the state government and/or the police authorities before carrying out the raid."

"The state police has a fully functional bomb disposal unit which could have assisted the entire operation, if the CBI indeed felt that a bomb squad was required during the raid," it added.

TMC claimed in its complaint to EC that there was no way of knowing with certainty, as to whether weapons were indeed recovered during the search and seizure procedure or whether they were surreptitiously planted by the CBI and NSG.

"It is reiterated that in absence of any representative of the state government, the purported recovery of arms and ammunition is possibly a ploy employed by the BJP in conspiracy with the CBI and the NSG to plant such weapons at the site," West Bengal's ruling party wrote in the complaint.

TMC alleged that CBI had deliberately informed the media well in advance so that there is nationwide odium and contempt against the TMC and its candidates during the ongoing LS polls.

"The raid is another testament to the fact that the BJP has weaponised the CBI and other Central probe agencies to carry out a smear campaign against TMC which would help sway the mindset of the voters in its favour," the complaint read.

In the letter to the EC, the TMC has demanded an immediate guideline or framework that CBI or any other Central agency can not take steps against political parties and their functionaries during the period of elections.

The party also asked the apex poll body for an immediate direction to the probe agencies and media to remove all references to TMC in their report on the raid.

Earlier on Friday, based on statement given by jailed now-suspended TMC leader Sheikh Shahjahan, the CBI along with Central armed police forces carried out a raid a premises of a close associate of Sheikh Shahjahan in West Bengal's Sandeshkhali, from where the Central porbe agency claimed to recover foreign-made firearms and a police service revolver.

According to CBI officials, three foreign-made revolvers, one Indian revolver, one Colt official police revolver, one foreign-made pistol, one country-made pistol, 120 rounds of 9mm bullets, 50 rounds of .45 calibre cartridges, 120 rounds of 9mm calibre cartridges, 50 rounds of .380 cartridges, and eight rounds of .32 cartridges along with many incriminating documents related to Sheikh Shahjahan were recovered from the premises during the search operation.

 Image from X/CBI Image from X/CBI

Later, the CBI called in the bomb disposal unit of the National Security Guard (NSG), and the NSG used a remote operated robot and two sniffer dogs while searching a vacant house in Sandeshkhali's Sarberia when they reportedly apprehended explosives.

CBI officials said that some items suspected to be country made bombs were also recovered from the location which were handled and disposed off by the NSG's bomb disposal unit.

Hitting out at Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee and her TMC over the incident, BJP leader (LoP) Suvendu Adhikari on Friday said the TMC should be declared a "terrorist organisation" and that CM Mamata Banerjee should be arrested.

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