The indictment of the government for its interference in the CBI by the Supreme Court just goes to show that the UPA-led Central Government is not interested in making the investigating agency autonomous, said Brinda Karat, Communist Party of India (Marxist) politburo member.

Ms. Karat, who was campaigning here for CPI(M) candidates ahead of the May 5 State legislative Assembly polls, told presspersons: “The Lokpal Bill, which was supposed to be passed last year, has not yet been sent to the Rajya Sabha. Obviously, the UPA Government is not willing to let go of the CBI, and this has been shamefully pointed out by the Supreme Court,” she said.

She added that even though the Supreme Court was scathing in their observations of the law minister and the union government, it was “contemptible” that those indicted continued in the government.

Furthermore, Ms. Karat saw the hand of the Congress in the continual stalling of the parliament session over the report on the 2G scam by the Joint Parliamentary Committee. “It is the responsibility of the government to see the smooth functioning of the parliament. Yet, they are not doing it, as they want to see the report, which is biased and legally infructuous, to pass through,” she said.

Accusing the JPC chief P.C. Chacko of “contempt of the parliament” for having leaked the report before producing it to the committee, Ms. Karat said: “This is callous and arrogant of the government.”

Responding to a question on the assault of Sarabjit Singh, an Indian prisoner in Pakistan, the politburo member said this could have been “avoided” if the government had interfered in time. “The issue has been raised for the past three years in the parliament. There are assurances every time, but no follow up,” she said.

She urged the government to send a medical team to Lahore, where he is lying in a coma. “We must use the international sympathy, which is with us, and bring Sarabjit back,” she said.

‘TMC in a joint venture’

She accused the Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal of being in a “joint venture” with the Saradha group of companies, which has resulted in thousands of people being affected by the chit fund scam. “If the government wanted to pay back the investors, they should have passed an ordinance or a bill to confiscate the property of the company. Instead, they dilly-dally, giving time for the accused to manipulate accounts. And, by putting taxes on smoking, and encouraging people to smoke, the TMC is making a mockery of people’s sorrows and vulnerability,” said Ms. Karat.

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