For Mamata Banerjee, the way to Writer’s Building—office of the West Bengal CM—and now Nabanna, the temporary seat of governance, had gone through the corridors of Rail Bhavan. Unapologetic about using her two stints as railway minister for her state, new trains, railway lines and projects for Bengal went into the making of her highly emotive ‘Ma, Maati, Maanush’ campaign that ended the 34-year Left Front rule. Eight years since, as she takes on the Narendra Modi government to “save the Constitution”, she seems to be looking at catapulting herself to the PMO in Delhi from Esplanade in Calcutta—site of her three-day sit-in against CBI “highhandedness” and a “saffron attack” on Bengal.
Claiming moral victory, she called off the protest after the Supreme Court forbade the CBI from arresting Calcutta police commissioner Rajeev Kumar and ordered him instead to be available for questioning regarding the chit fund scam. The scam that involved Sharada, Rose Valley and some other players broke in 2013 and the CBI took over the probe in 2014. Coming just months ahead of the general elections, the timing of the CBI push against Rajeev Kumar, who had headed the Bengal police probe into the scam, has given Mamata enough fodder to raise the cry of political vendetta. But her move also means a breather to her partymen already in the dock for the scam that defrauded millions of people. Citing vendetta, those accused too could well play victim now.