July 6, 2021 1:18:01 am
Stating that Tushar Mehta’s “meeting with BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari”, an accused in the Narada sting operation case, raised serious doubts of impropriety, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Monday wrote a letter to President Ram Nath Kovind demanding Mehta’s removal as Solicitor General of India.
“Such a meeting between one of the highest serving law officers of India, the solicitor general who is also appointed as the Special Public Prosecutor for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), and an accused person being investigated by the same agency, raises extremely serious doubts of impropriety,” the letter, which was submitted to the President by a delegation of TMC MPs in Rashtrapati Bhawan, read.
While Mehta is representing the CBI in the Supreme Court and the Calcutta High Court in the agency’s probe against senior TMC leaders in the Narada sting case, Adhikari, former Trinamool Congress heavyweight, is an accused in the same case.
Mehta has denied meeting Adhikari at his official residence in Delhi. Mehta had earlier said that while “Suvendu Adhikari did come to my residence-cum-office unannounced”, he did not meet him.
The TMC, however, told the President: “This is a deeply troubling matter of national importance that raises grave doubts of impropriety in one of India’s highest legal offices – the Office of the Solicitor General of India,” it said.
“To make matters worse, this meeting took place subsequent to an equally improper meeting between Adhikari and the Home Minister of India, Amit Shah. Notably, Adhikari is an accused in various criminal cases of cheating, illegal gratification, and bribery etc.”
Such meetings make a total mockery of the criminal justice system and would only serve to destroy the common man’s faith in the judiciary, it said.
“We, therefore, have reasons to believe that such a meeting has been organised to influence the outcome of criminal cases where Adhikari is an accused person, using the high offices of the solicitor general. We state that the act of the solicitor general to provide an opportunity of an audience to Suvendu Adhikari not only indicative of grave impropriety but also raises troubling doubts about his professional integrity,” read the letter.
Meanwhile, TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee reiterated the demand for the release of the CCTV footage of Mehta’s residence-cum-office of July 1 afternoon when Adhikari visited the place.
“Even after 72 hours, Mr Tushar Mehta, Hon’ble SG of India, has failed to release the 20 mins of the CCTV footage of his own house to corroborate his own statement. Mr SG, with such weak defence you can continue serving as BJP’s Secret General, not India’s Solicitor General.”
Earlier, the Trinamool Congress wrote a similar letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding the removal of Mehta.
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