New Delhi: Action by Central agencies against the BJP government’s rivals and critics has witnessed a massive spike since the BJP-led government came to power in 2014, an NDTV analysis has found.
Since 2014, Central agencies have targeted a whopping 570 of the government’s political rivals and critics and in some cases, their family members as well. This massive sweep includes opposition politicians, non-NDA politicians, their relatives and aides, activists, lawyers, independent media houses or journalists, members of the film fraternity and even government officials who questioned the ruling party’s conduct.
Conversely, only 39 individuals linked to the BJP or its allies have faced the heat of central agencies such as the Central Bureau of Investigation, Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax in the past seven years.
The opposition party with the most number of cases is the Congress; 75 of the party have been targeted, followed by the Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress, 36 members of which have seen coercive action.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party is next, with cases against at least 18 of their members including Mr Kejriwal.
As this slide shows, virtually no non-BJP political party has been untouched by Central agency action in the past 7 years — from the Abdullah family and Mehbooba Mufti in Kashmir, to party colleagues and relatives of the DMK’s Stalin in the Tamil Nadu.
Droves of Left-leaning activists seen as opposed to the BJP, like Sudha Bharadwaj and the others accused in the Bhima Koregaon case, have also been booked or arrested.
29 media houses or journalists known for critical reporting on the government have also faced agency heat — the most recent being raids on UP-based media houses Dainik Bhaskar, a mass-selling newspaper, and Bharat Samachar, a Lucknow-based TV channel that stood out for their hard-hitting reporting of the second Covid wave in UP.
The 570 figure is a massive 340 per cent increase compared to similar action under the Congress-led UPA 2 government, under whose watch 85 individuals or groups seen as critical of the Congress were targeted by Central agencies, working out to an average of 17 cases per year, compared to 75 cases a year under the Modi government.
With inputs from NDTV