BJP hints at ‘conspiracy’, says there were rumours for month; TMC hits back
Following the Supreme Court’s directive to the Calcutta High Court Chief Justice to reassign the proceedings pending before Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay against TMC national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee in connection with the schools jobs scam, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday hinted at a “conspiracy” and alleged that there had been rumours for a over a month that some cases “might be taken away from Justice Gangopadhyay”.
Talking to reporters on Saturday in Kolkata, BJP national vice-president Dilip Ghosh on Saturday said that he smelled a “conspiracy” in the entire development. “There were rumours for over a month that some cases might be taken away from Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay. There was tension regarding this among people and their worst fear has come true. This order will definitely crush the will of those who were rallying behind Justice Gangopadhyay in his fight against corruption. It is natural that from time to time cases are reassigned to different judges. But, there could be a conspiracy behind this entire matter,” Ghosh said.
“The comments made by some TMC leaders have come true. We have been hearing that some ruling party leaders said that some cases will be taken away from him. Daal main kuch kala hai (There is something fishy in the matter). If the judiciary cannot be protected from this then it is a matter of concern for the people,” he added.
The senior BJP leader also urged Justice Gangopadhyay to not get “disheartened” and take the development “personally”. “He has become a symbol of hope and justice for the 10 crore people of Bengal. They look up to him to fight corruption. He must not get disheartened and continue his fight against corruption. We hope that he will continue to hear other cases and give justice to the people.”
Reacting to the BJP’s allegations, senior TMC leader and West Bengal minister Firhad Hakim said, “The Constitution of the country and the laws allow an individual to move higher courts if one is not satisfied with the order of a lower court. We don’t know why the Opposition are holding us responsible for this (reassigning of the case). We respect the law and the judiciary. I believe that God is above us all, even judges.”
On Saturday, the apex court directed the acting Chief Justice of the Calcutta High Court to reassign the West Bengal School Service Commission cases pending with Justice Gangopadhyay to another judge and then stayed his order seeking a report from the Supreme Court Secretary General. Hours later, Justice Gangopadhyay said he thinks that “gradually, all recruitment related cases will be taken away” from him.
Talking to reporters on Saturday midnight in Kolkata in Kolkata, Justice Gangopadhyay said, “I will raise my voice against any kind of corruption. I did not hear this case (recruitment case) to suit my personal interest. I am least bothered whether I hear this case or someone else does.”
“I would urge the protesting job aspirants to have patience as the case has not concluded. The matter has only been reassigned to another judge. I have other cases related to corruption. I believe those will also be taken away from me gradually. I feel those will be taken away on the same grounds based on which today’s direction came. However, I am not stepping down as I don’t believe in running away… I will only say this at the end: Supreme Court jug jug jiyo,” he added.