Former CPM general secretary Prakash Karat on Sunday filed a complaint against Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Derek O'Brien for showing a "morphed" picture which showed Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh offering sweet to the senior CPI(M) leader.
"The Trinamool Congress has resorted to a very low level tactic by presenting a morphed picture of me and Shri Rajnath Singh. I have had no opportunity to meet Rajnath Singh, but this has been done to politically defame me and my party and show me in bad light among the people," Karat told ANI.
"Since this is a patent case of using a fabricated picture and put on the website, this comes under the cyber offence and I have lodged a complaint with the Delhi police to proceed against Derek O'Brien under the relevant laws," he added.
Meanwhile, CPI leader D. Raja has said the episode proves the party led by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is desperate and afraid of defeat in the assembly polls. "This shows that the TMC is desperate and it is afraid of impending defeat in the coming elections, otherwise they must not have stooped to such low. The Election Commission should take cognizance of this issue," he added.
O'Brien had called a press conference yesterday in which he showed two videos of Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi's speeches and four photographs, including one that showed Union Home Minister Singh offering sweet to former CPM general secretary Karat. His press conference was prompted by an earlier one by the Congress, where a 2001 video was aired that showed Mamata Banerjee referring to the BJP as "a natural ally" of the TMC. In response, O'Brien sought to show that the Left and the BJP were "two sides of the same coin".
However, the photograph showed by O' Brien turned out to be "photoshopped" as the BJP later released the "real picture" - in which Rajnath is seen offering sweet to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The TMC removed the photograph from its website, admitting the mistake. However, this did not seem to pacify the BJP, who have threatened to proceed with legal action over the blunder.
"Mamata and the TMC have realised that the ground has slipped from beneath their feet in west Bengal and are resorting to untoward methods. And that is why they showed this morphed picture showing Rajnath feeding a sweet to Karat ji and that too at a BJP office," BJP leader Sidharth Nath Singh told ANI.
"We are working on a legal recourse which will be sorted out tonight and we will take legal action tomorrow. Be it cyber crime or filing an FIR, we will take action on TMC and O'Brien. We will even have him arrested if we have to," Singh said.