Home Minister P Chidambaram reacted sharply to the Left attempt to link Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee, saying the fact that the CPI (M) and the Trinamool Congress were opposed to each other in West Bengal did not mean that “responsible political leaders should hurl charges against other equally responsible leader”.
Earlier in the day, the CPI(M) asked PM Manmohan Singh to explain how a central minister belonging to the Trinamool, had “prior information” of the Rajdhani Express hijacking.
Senior CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury said the “political collaboration” between the Trinamool and the Maoists had put the security of railway passengers at risk.
The Home Minister said it seemed that the CPI(M) leader knows more about what is happening in the Trinamool rather than his own party. “The charges are baseless and need not be noticed,” he said.
Making it clear that he was “not at all happy” at such charges being leveled against a political leader, the minister said there was no intelligence input to suggest that the train would be detained in West Bengal on Tuesday and a probe was being conducted to ascertain who was behind the act.
He said if anyone in the government knew that Rajdhani Express would be detained, they would have made an attempt to nip it in the bud.
In an editorial in the CPI(M) weekly, People’s Democracy, Yechury said, “Sishir Adhikary (Trinamool leader and MoS for rural development), soon after the incident, boasted to the media that he had prior knowledge that such an attack would take place.”
“Surely, the Prime Minister needs to probe the source of such knowledge,” he said, adding, “The Prime Minister and the UPA (the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance) government need to assure the people that India’s internal security is not being compromised.”