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regular-article-logo Sunday, 26 May 2024

Do you have the money to pay Trinamul leaders for jobs, asks Amit Shah Raigunje poll rally

'Bribes of Rs. 10 lakhs, Rs. 15 lakhs have to be paid to Trinamul leaders to secure jobs in schools?'

Our Bureau Calcutta Published 23.04.24, 02:33 PM
Amit Shah in Bengal

Amit Shah in Bengal Videograb: X / @AmitShah

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday asked the people of Raigunje if they had the resources to pay for jobs to Trinamul leaders, referring to the cash-for-jobs scam in schools that hit the ruling party in this election season.

“Bribes of Rs. 10 lakhs, Rs. 15 lakhs have to be paid to Trinamul leaders to secure jobs in schools? Do you have that kind of money?” Shah asked, while campaigning at Karandighi of Raigunje lok sabha, in North Dinajpur for the BJP candidate Kartik Chandra Pal.

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Shah’s comments came a day after a division bench of the Calcutta high court declared null and void the recruitment process of State Level Selection Test that led to scrapping of 25, 753 appointments of teaching and non-teaching staff in state-run and state-sponsored schools.

The attack was on expected lines, as the BJP has been trying to cash in on the issue. The party’s Tamluk nominee Abhijit Gangopadhyay while he was a judge at the Calcutta High Court had issued most of the orders that led to the probe by the central agencies into the multiple scams.

A desperate Trinamul has attempted to divert public attention from the scam pointing to the political choice that Gangopadhyay made soon after he stepped down as a judge.

Though the number of jobs that got cancelled following the order of the bench comprising Justices Debangsu Basak and Md Shabbar Rashidi, Shah mentioned the figure to be 50,000.

“Just yesterday the High court suspended 50,000 jobs,” Shah said at the public meeting at Raigunje, which was preceded by a roadshow at Maldah’s Englishbazar, alongside the Maldah South nominee Srirupa Mitra Chowdhury.

In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the Raigunje and Maldah North constituencies were among the 18 seats that the BJP had won.

In its order on Monday, the bench had instructed the Central Bureau of Investigation to interrogate the candidates who had secured jobs using unfair means and also those officials who were instrumental in creating supernumerary posts to accommodate the illegal appointments.

“From one minister’s house Rs. 51 crore was recovered. Partha Chatterjee is in jail? Shouldn’t cut money, cash-for-jobs be stopped?” asked Shah. “Can Mamata didi stop it? No. Only Narendra Modi and the BJP can stop this.”

Chatterjee, Trinamul MLAs Manik Bhattacharya, Jiban Krishna Saha and several key officials in the state education department, the school service commission and the boards running the secondary and primary level education were arrested.

The Union home minister also blamed the Trinamul for the culture of poll-related violence in the state.

“Elections happen in every states in the country. Nowhere else are people killed for participating in the poll process be it the panchayat, the Assembly or Lok Sabha polls,” Shah said. “And the reason behind this is Trinamul Congress,” Shah said.

He also accused Mamata of shifting the proposed AIIMS from Raigunje to Nadia’s Kalyani.

“If you give us 30-35 seats from Bengal this time, we will ensure north Bengal gets an AIIMS-like hospital,” Shah said.

Raigunje will go to polls during the second phase of elections on April 26 along with Darjeeling and Balurghat.

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