Probe agencies being ‘abused’ by government: Congress

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New Delhi, July 23 (IANS) The Congress on Monday accused the Narendra Modi government of “misusing” and “abusing” the central investigating agencies such as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for alleged political vendetta.

Raising the issue in the Rajya Sabha during the Zero Hour, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma said that the “misuse” of central agencies by the government was creating an environment of “distrust, fear and terror in the country”.

“The investigating agencies have a role to perform under the laws of the land and the Constitution of the country. They are not instruments to be abused by the government of the day for targeted political vendetta or to persecute senior officials of the government,” Sharma said.

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He said that parallel proceedings for one alleged offence were being conducted simultaneously by the CBI, ED and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI).

“Such a thing has never happened … parallel FIRs. Under the Constitution of India, any citizen has the protection of equality before the law, there cannot be any discrimination. The agencies have to coordinate their functioning, but they cannot create a situation where you have separate FIRs, separate bail provisions, multiple cases for the same alleged offence…,” Sharma said.

He said that senior government officials were being harassed by the agencies well after their retirement, by being summoned for investigations.

“This was discussed in the House that there has to be a distinction between bona fide actions and acts of corruption. We are equally concerned that the agencies now as per the reports are going to the extent of forcing people, extracting… The mandate is there but they cannot be abused. Why is the government silent? This is a serious situation,” he added.

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Interrupting Sharma, Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu said that the MPs should not “demoralise the agencies”.

–IANS

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