A war of words has ensued between Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra and West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar after the legislator alleged that people related to the governor were appointed as officers on special duty in the Raj Bhavan.
Moitra’s comments came after Dhankhar tweeted on Sunday about summoning Chief Secretary HK Dwivedi to brief him about the steps taken to contain the post-poll violence in the state. Dhankhar called the situation an “extremely alarming law and order” scenario.
“Uncleji [Dhnkhar] only way WB’s ‘grim situation’ will improve is if you move your sorry self back to Delhi & find another job,” Moitra replied to the governor’s tweet.
Continuing to refer to Dhankhar as “uncle ji”, Moitra tweeted out a list of officers on special duty in Raj Bhavan, showing how the officials were allegedly related to the governor.
“And Uncleji – while you’re at it – take the extended family you’ve settled in at WB RajBhavan with you,” she tweeted.
According to the list, officer on special duty to governor Abbhudoy Singh Sekhawat is the son of Dhankhar’s brother-in-law. Ruchi Dubey and Prasant Dixit, officers on special duty in different capacities, are the wife and brother of Major Gorang Diksit, Dhankar’s former aide-de-camp.
The list also named officer on special duty (coordination) Akhil Chowdhury, officer on special duty (Information Technology) Koustav S Valikar and newly-appointed officer on special duty Kishan Dhankhar as being related to the governor.
Moitra told the media that she has the “democratic right” to ask questions to the governor, reported The Indian Express. “He keeps asking questions to the state government,” she said. “I would rather request him to look into the mirror. He has brought his entire village and entire clan to Raj Bhawan.”
Dhankhar rubbished the allegations, saying that it was factually wrong. “OSDs are from three states and belong to four different castes,” he tweeted. “None of them is part of close family. Four of them are not from my caste or state.”
He claimed that Moitra’s comments were a “distraction strategy” to divert attention from the law and order scenario in the state. “Would continue undeterred and with zeal to serve the people of state and vindicate my oath of office under Article 159 of the Constitution,” tweeted Dhankhar, tagging West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
In response, the legislator asked Dhankhar to show how the the officers on special duty were appointed to the Raj Bhawan. “BJP IT Cell can’t get you out of this one Uncleji,” she tweeted.
“And I don’t think Vice President of India also happening for you.”
Dhankhar has been at loggerheads with the West Bengal government under Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee over many matters, including the law and order situation in the state.
He has repeatedly pointed to the alleged lawlessness and violence in the state following the Assembly election results in which the Trinamool Congress won by a landslide.
Following the results, reports of violence had emerged from the state. While the Opposition parties accused the Trinamool Congress of violence, the Banerjee-led party claimed that its supports have also died.
There were also multiple reports of false information being shared on social media. In one such instance, the BJP was accused of posting a video, which identified a journalist as someone who was killed in the violence. The video was, however, reportedly deleted later. Journalist Abhro Banerjee was identified in the video as “Manik Moitro” from Sitalkuchi.
In another instance, party MP Swapan Dasgupta had alleged that women were molested in Nanoor in Birbhum district. Another BJP leader Saumitra Khan also tweeted on those lines. However, Birbhum Superintendent of Police NN Tripathi said that no such incident took place. “I inform everyone that it’s fake news,” Tripathi said.