BJP distorting facts about MLA’s suspected suicide, Mamata Banerjee tells President
In her letter to President Ram Nath Kovind, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the suspected suicide of a legislator does not appear to be a political case as being projected by BJPUpdated: Jul 15, 2020 20:33 IST
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday saying the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was “distorting facts” about the death of Debendranath Roy, MLA from Hemtabad in North Dinajpur district who won the reserved seat on a CPI (M) ticket in 2016 before joining the BJP in 2019.
Hours after her letter, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the state police charged Niloy Singh, an acquaintance of Roy, with murder. Singh was picked up from Malda district on Tuesday and interrogated for hours.
The 63-year-old legislator’s body was found hanging on Monday morning outside a roadside shop about two kilometers away from his home. He left home around 1 am in the night with an unidentified person. Roy’s family and the BJP have alleged that he was murdered. The BJP has demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and met Kovind on Tuesday. Bengal BJP leaders led agitations outside police stations across the state on Wednesday.
Roy’s body was found hanging outside a mobile phone shop that he used to visit to meet local people, Banerjee said in the letter that was handed to the President by Trinamool Congress (TMC) Rajya Sabha member Derek O’Brien.
“I am constrained to invite your kind and personal attention to a particular fact. This is in context of your meeting with a delegation of BJP who might have apprised with some distorted facts” says the letter’s opening lines.
“On receipt of post mortem report and on primary investigation West Bengal police has reported that it is a cause of suspected suicide and could be related to some local money transfer activities. The note found in a pocket of the deceased also names two persons who are allegedly found to be related to such money transfer activities in the locality,” Banerjee wrote.
“Therefore, I am sorry to say that it does not appear to be a political case as being projected by BJP,” she said.
She said her government has taken all necessary actions immediately for a comprehensive investigation and has handed over the case to CID for proper investigation.
“I would like to assure that West Bengal is a state where we always respect all political parties, their leaders and workers,” the letter said.
“The death of one of our compatriots in the West Bengal legislative assembly is very unfortunate. Let his soul rest in peace and let the truth unravel,” Banerjee’s letter said.
The BJP reacted by saying that the letter is proof of the ruling the TMC’s guilty consciousness.
“In the past, several murders were passed off as suicides by the police in Bengal. In none of those occasions the chief minister felt the urge to rush letters to the President. This proves that dal main kuchh kala hai (something is fishy),” BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha told HT.
Till Wednesday afternoon, state CID officers made no comment on the investigation. Nilay Sinha, one of the two men mentioned in the note found in Roy’s pocket, is being questioned by the police. Roy’s wife told the police that he was trying to get into the rice trade and had taken a huge loan from banks.