West Bengal Governor opens ‘anti-corruption cell’ at Raj Bhavan

The initiative is expected to open a new front for confrontation between the Governor and the state government

KOLKATA | Updated: 02 August, 2023 5:47 pm IST
West Bengal Governor Dr. CV Anand Bose speaking to The New Indian in Kolkata

KOLKATA: West Bengal Governor Dr. CV Anand Bose has set up an “anti-corruption cell” at the Raj Bhavan for people to report irregularities and malpractices in the state government, opening another front of confrontation with chief minister Mamata Banerjee.

It follows the Governor’s earlier initiative of establishing a “peace room” for people to report incidents of violence related to panchayat elections.

The anti-corruption cell will function round the clock to gather public grievances, Bose told The New Indian in an interview at the Raj Bhavan.

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“The peace room is against violence, and the anti-corruption room is against corruption. The anti-corruption cell has been set up to provide a forum for people to report instances of corruption, allowing us to take appropriate action with the government and authorities,” he said.

Describing chief minister Mamata Banerjee as his “colleague”, the Governor said that there was no friction between the Raj Bhavan and Nabanna, the state secretariat. “There might be differences in opinion but there is no conflict between the Governor and the government. There is a perfect understanding with my constitutional colleague, the chief minister.”

The state reported massive violence during the recently-held panchayat elections, prompting protests by opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Governor’s visit to affected areas.

Bose stated, “There is no denying the fact that there was violence before, during, and after the panchayat election. We must take stern action against those miscreants who take the law into their own hands and hold society to ransom.”

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“That process has started, and there will be a relentless war against violence,” he added, informing that the new cell has started receiving complaints.

Sandip Kumar Singh, the nodal officer for peace room and anti-corruption cell, emphasized their necessity, particularly in rural Bengal. “The cell has received calls from people, irrespective of political affiliations, seeking solutions to various issues,” he said.

Kaberi Puitandy Kar, the operator of these cells, said that the majority of the callers want to keep their identity a secret, which the cell is committed to honour. “Some callers are also inquiring about registering complaints via phone, as not everyone has an email account.”

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