A video clip of a Trinamool Congress leader in Malda demanding money from beneficiaries of the government housing scheme has gone viral on social media. While state BJP president Sukanta Majumder attacked the ruling party by tweeting that video, the TMC said that the BJP should complain to the police if it has evidence, and not talk to the media just to do politics.
The person against whom the allegation has surfaced is the secretary of the TMC in Chanchal-II, Chandan Saha.
According to Mr Saha, he had made the video clip just for fun, but that the opposition made it a “conspiracy to defame” him.
In the video, Mr Saha is seen and heard demanding Rs 3,000 from villagers if they were to be given houses under the government’s housing scheme.
The incident in the video clip purportedly took place in Kajaldighi village in Chanchal-II in the district. According to the beneficiary seen in the video, Vinod Roy, Mr Saha had already taken Rs 4000 from him some time ago.
“He said he will get the government house for me. But I did not get the house. He again came to me asking for another Rs 3000, but I refused to pay,” Mr Roy said.
Mr Roy’s relative Seema Roy said that during the lockdown, she had borrowed the Rs 4,000 and given it to Mr Saha, but that they were yet to be given the promised house. “He came to ask for money again. I told him that I cannot pay more. I instead told him that I wanted my Rs 4000 back,” she said.
According to BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar, TMC leaders had been taking “tola” (extortion money) from the villagers with promises to provide them houses under the Prime Minister’s housing scheme.
“This is irrefutable evidence. This is nothing new. The entire Trinamul Congress is now the ‘tolamul’ party” Mr Majumdar said. State TMC general secretary Krishnendu Narayan Chowdhury, on the other hand, said, “If Sukanta Babu knew about this, why did he not file an FIR? Everyone has the right to lodge an FIR. If there is a complaint, the police will take action.”