BJP MP Saumitra Khan on Tuesday referred to TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee as a “thief and robber”. He was speaking to mediapersons after addressing a rally in Cooch Behar.
TMC leaders in the district have filed a police case against Khan for his “derogatory” remarks, sources said.
“Bhaipo (nephew) is Abhishek Bandopadhyay. He is a thief, a robber and has links to coal mafia. He has also extorted money from youths after assuring them of jobs. I have no regrets in saying this in an open platform before you all,” Khan told mediapersons after the rally.
“We will file a case in court soon. Such remarks against someone who is a Member of Parliament cannot be accepted,” said a local TMC leader.
Saumitra Khan was elected as an MLA on a Congress ticket in 2011. In 2014, he joined the TMC and became an MP from Bishnupur seat. Ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, he joined the BJP.
MP Abhishek Banerjee had recently said, “No BJP leader, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has the guts to take my name. They instead use innuendos like ‘bhaipo’ or ‘bhatija’ (nephew) to level charges against me.” Over the past few months, BJP leaders have targeted him, referring to him as “bhaipo” (Nephew).
Abhishek said when he first contested in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, he won by a margin of only 71,000 votes but in 2019 he got more than 7,91,000 votes and the winning margin was more than three lakh.
On Monday, state BJP Dilip Ghosh sent a legal notice to Abhishek Banerjee. On Sunday, Abhishek Banerjee, while addressing a public rally at Diamond Harbour had called Ghosh a “goon” and “mafia”, and had dared the BJP leadership to take legal action against him.
Referring to the legal notice, Ghosh had said he (Abhishek) was second-in-command of the TMC, and was using such language against the state president of an Opposition party (the BJP).
“He (Khan) became an MP by holding Abhishek Bandopadhyay’s hand and now he is making such derogatory remarks about him. We will definitely see him in court. We have already filed an FIR,” said Abhijit Dey, Bhowmick district president of TMC youth wing (Cooch Behar).
Meanwhile, an FIR has been lodged in Kotwali police station.
“His (Khan) disgraceful statements to the effect is intended to insult and to defame in public at large,” read a portion of the complaint filed in the police station signed by Rakesh Choudhury, president Cooch Behar Town block committee.
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