A DAY after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that she had created the ‘Biswa Bangla’ logo and given the state government permission to use it without taking any royalty, BJP leader Mukul Roy on Thursday demanded a probe into the matter by an independent agency. Urging the state government to come clean on the issue, Roy told mediapersons that it was not clear who is speaking the truth. “Yesterday, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said she created the Biswa Bangla logo and had granted West Bengal government the permission to use it without any condition. If that is the case, then there should be an agreement. Where is the agreement? When and where the agreement was signed?” he asked.
“On the other hand, (Trinamool Congress MP) Abhishek Banerjee, in his affidavit to the court on November 26, 2013, had said that he applied for the ownership of the logo with the approval of the chief minister. How can a logo be used by government and a private person at the same time? We need to find out who is speaking the truth. For that, there should be a probe by an independent agency,” he added while waiving documents.
The controversy surrounding the logo had started on November 10, when Roy had alleged that Biswa Bangla Corporation Limited – a company owned by the state government – and Jago Bangla Media Private Limited, which publishes the Trinamool mouthpiece, were owned by Abhishek, the chief minister’s nephew.
On November 21, the court had passed an interim injunction order against Roy, stopping him from making any further statements linking Abhishek to the two companies. However, Roy went on to allege at a press conference that Abhishek had applied for Biswa Bangla and Jago Bangla trademarks with the approval and at the behest of Mamata. On November 24, Abhishek filed a criminal defamation case against Roy before the chief metropolitan magistrate, following which, Roy has been asked to appear before the court on December 20.
“As soon as I raised this issue, Abhishek Banerjee withdrew his application (for trademark). I raised the issue on November 10 and he withdrew the application on November 13. Why did he wait for four years to withdraw his application?… What happened in the last four years? Moreover, the state government, in its objection (before the court), stated that someone has applied for the trademark with a malafide and dishonest intention,” Roy alleged on Thursday.
Reacting to the allegations, Trinamool Congress secretary general Partha Chatterjee said: “He cannot make a point by showing some documents. This will not help, as he will have to prove whatever he is saying. It is his responsibility to establish every word he is saying.”