Parliament proceedings washed out amid row over WB crisis

Both the houses of Parliament today unable to take up any business as opposition members, led by TMC have resorted to agitation protesting against government `politics of victimisation’ using CBI against their political opponents. Last evening’s CBI-Kolkata police row has rocked the Parliament session.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh has  termed the developments in West Bengal as “unprecedented” and warned that the Centre has powers to take action.After repeated adjournments, both the houses were adjourned for the day.

In the Lok Sabha, Trinamool Congress members were joined in their protest by members of the Congress, BJD, NCP, SP and RJD who spoke out against the Centre over developments in West Bengal, with many of them alleging that the Narendra Modi government was misusing the CBI.

Making a statement in Lok Sabha on the prevailing situation in Kolkata, Singh described the action against the CBI probe team as “unprecedented” and a threat to the federal system of the country.”There may be constitutional breakdown in West Bengal…under the Constitution, the central government has been vested with the power to maintain normalcy in any part of the country,” he said. “Whatever happened on Sunday, it indicates constitutional breakdown,” Singh said amid din in the House.

He also said that a report has been sought from the Governor. The home minister hoped that the West Bengal government as well as other state governments provide a conducive atmosphere for law enforcement agencies to carry out their duties.

Earlier, opposition parties in Lok Sabha attacked the government over the alleged misuse of central agencies against political rivals, saying it was against democratic norms.Trinamool Congress leader Saugata Roy said there is a crisis in West Bengal and that the Centre was “misusing” the CBI to politically capture the state.

While alleging that the Centre was “constantly using the CBI to throttle the Opposition”, Roy said the party is strongly protesting with all forces at its command. BJD leader B Mahtab said the incident smacks of impropriety and also questions the integrity of the CBI. “We are not a banana republic…,” he said, adding the CBI is becoming a “political stooge and political weapon” in the hands of the Centre.

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge charged that the government was using the CBI as a weapon to finish the Opposition and put in place an autocratic regime. Referring to alleged misuse of the CBI, Kharge said such things have happened not only in West Bengal but also in Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Neither the people nor any party would bow down before such actions, he added.NCP leader Supriya Sule said her party is condemning the CBI for allegedly using its muscle power against a woman chief minister.

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