'BJP star campaigners': Congress jibe over ED officer's arrest in Tamil Nadu | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

'BJP star campaigners': Congress jibe over ED officer's arrest in Tamil Nadu

Dec 02, 2023 05:09 PM IST

The Tamil Nadu police arrested ED officer Ankit Tiwari on Friday, for allegedly extorting ₹20 lakh from a local doctor.

New Delhi: The Congress on Saturday took potshots at the BJP over the arrest of an Enforcement Directorate official in Tamil Nadu for allegedly extorting 20 lakh from a local doctor, saying the BJP's "superstar campaigners" have "stumbled" yet again. The party's senior leader, Jairam Ramesh accused the Narendra Modi government of damaging the reputation of central agencies and "turning them into political tools".

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh(ANI)
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh(ANI)

"One of the superstar campaigners of the BJP has stumbled yet again, this time in Tamil Nadu. Weeks after an ED official was caught with a 15 lakhs bribe in Rajasthan, another official of the ED was caught red-handed with 20 lakhs for extortion and bribery," he said.

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"The Modi government has completely damaged the reputation of ED/CBI/IT by turning them into political tools to harass and intimidate the Opposition and anyone who questions the government. Now its officers are running their own mini extortion rackets," he added.

Citing cases and raids against leaders, the Opposition often accuses the BJP government of silencing critics by using central agencies like ED, CBI and the Income Tax department.

Also read: Ankit Tiwari arrest: DMK calls ED 'Extortion Department'; BJP defends agency

The Tamil Nadu police arrested ED officer Ankit Tiwari on Friday, for allegedly extorting 20 lakh from a local doctor.

DMK MP Dayanidhi Maran today called the ED, ‘Extortion Department’.

"The Directorate of Vigilance & Anti-Corruption police, Tamil Nadu have arrested an ED officer for demanding and accepting a bribe of 20 Lakh in Dindigul. This shatters the faith citizens have in public institutions, making one wonder if ED stands for Extortion Department or Enforcement Directorate after being systematically misused by the BJP government to brazenly terrorize and extort political opponents and critics across the country," the DMK MP wrote on X.

The Tamil Nadu BJP, meanwhile, said the agency mustn't be blamed for the actions of an individual.

"Yesterday, DVAC arrested one person from the ED department. He was produced before the court and sent for judicial custody. This is not the first time and this isn't the last time either. Earlier too, many have been caught and arrested from specialized agencies like CBI and ED in states like Rajasthan, West Bengal and Delhi. Recently, a similar incident happened in Rajasthan...We can't blame the ED for a single individual's mistake," BJP leader K Annamalai said, reported ANI.

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