Three Congress MLAs from Jharkhand were detained in West Bengal’s Howrah district by the police with cash amounting to Rs 48 lakh was seized from a vehicle in which all of them were travelling, on Saturday, late night.
The vehicle belonged to one of the three Congress legislators, who were arrested on Saturday evening along with the other two party MLAs.
The three detained Congress MLAs, Irfan Ansari from Jamtara Assembly constituency, Rajesh Kacchap from Khijri and Naman Bixal Kongari from Kolebira, have told the police that the cash was meant for purchasing saris from the renowned wholesale market at Burrabazar in central Kolkata.
Howrah Rural Police sources said that all the three Congress MLAs claimed that they represent tribal-dominated constituencies in Jharkhand, especially Khijri and Kolebira.
“They (Congress MLAs) informed us that they wanted to purchase saris in large quantities from Burrabazar wholesale market for the purpose of distribution in their respective constituencies on the occasion of the forthcoming World Tribal Day on August 9, 2022,” said an official of the Howrah Rural Police.
However, the interrogating police officers are not satisfied with the explanations given by the three MLAs since they were unable to produce any documents to establish the source of the money seized from the vehicle.
Reacting to the arrest, state Congress president and Lok Sabha MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said that if the three party MLAs from Jharkhand are proved to be involved in any illegal activities, then they must be punished and the Congress leadership will not shield them.