Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has been criticized and questioned after she announced a two-member inquiry commission has been formed to investigate allegations of spying on lawmakers, officials, and media using the Israeli spyware Pegasus.
Jyotirmay Bhattacharya, a former chief justice of the Calcutta High Court, and Madan Bhimrao Lokur, an ex-Supreme Court judge, are the two members of the government-appointed commission.
BJP has also alleged that leaders in Bengal avoid even speaking on normal calls for the fear of being heard to whatsapp calls, facetime or even signal are the mode of communication.
BJP IT cell convener Amit Malviya lashed out at the TMC supremo as he took to Twitter to say, “Why are we even surprised that Mamata Banerjee has constituted a judicial commission to investigate bogus “Pegasus Project”? Her priorities have always been warped. If only she had shown such alacrity to probe post-poll violence and investigate several Covid scams in Bengal!”
Similarly, advocate and vice-president of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, Priyanka Tibrewal raised the questions regarding the recently headlined issue of post poll violence in West Bengal.
She alleged that NHRC officials are beaten up when they enquired the post poll violence and questioned why no panel was set up to investigate the same. She added Banerjee’s interest ‘lies national politics’.
Tibrewal said, “The committee that has been set up by Mamata Banerjee is because her entire interest lies in national politics. For the first time we have seen such a candidate who has been sitting as the Chief Minister of West Bengal even after losing the legislative assembly elections and still now her target is to advance nationally. it is a really that the government machinery in state is used for spying on everyone around.”
She further attacked Banerjee as she raised questions on the Saradha scam. She added, “Why was a committee not formed by Mamata when her painting worth Rs.200 was brought for Rs. 1 crore and 80 lakhs by Sudipto Sen of Saradha Chit Funds. Why did Mamata Banerjee not set up a committee when the Chit Fund company took her painting for such high prices? Therefore, this is nothing but her political interests which is very clearly evident.”
BJP MP Raju Bista claimed that the committee is formed to avoid the issues like continually increasing violence in West Bengal, and that it establishes that Banerjee is righteous and ‘wants drama.’
According to Bista, “The committee that has been set up Mamata Didi today is merely just a fraud, a drama. The commission has been established to avoid the questions that are being raised on TMC and on Mamata Didi. To avoid the continually increasing violence in West Bengal; how Mamata and TMC has plunged West Bengal in a debt of 400 crores; and how several fingers are pointing towards the government regarding the ill management of COVID-19 crisis.”
TMC MLA Vivek Gupta responded to the issue and claimed, that “the commission is an initiative, an effort to tell the people of West Bengal and the entire nation that they are safe.”
He said, “Everyone knows that BJP is spying, violating the basic human rights and the rights of every Indian citizen and is now blaming us. BJP should instead appreciate and welcome the successful steps taken by the state government for establishing the first judicial committee in West Bengal in view of looking into the said issue. And if BJP has not done anything wrong then they should themselves cooperate with the commission and help them seek the truth.”
Mamata Banerjee had previously asked the Supreme Court to investigate the alleged surveillance by Pegasus spyware on a suo motu basis.
Banerjee also launched a stinging attack on the central government, saying she had covered the camera on her phone to prevent spying.