Lucknow, Jul 22 (PTI) IT raids on media groups Dainik Bhaskar and Bharat Samachar came under heavy criticism on Thursday, with the SP describing the BJP government as a 'coward' trying to scare those “exposing its failures” and the Congress terming it an attack on democracy.
Flaying the government, the UP Congress in a tweet said, 'Kamal' wale, kalam se darte hain (People with lotus are afraid of the pen).' The Congress termed the raids on both media houses as an 'attack on democracy'.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) on its Twitter handle said when a 'coward' government is 'afraid', it uses central agencies like the ED, IT Department and the CBI against those opposing it.
'With the ink of truth, the government's corruption, mismanagement during the Covid pandemic, false claims and hollow announcements were exposed by Dainik Bhaskar. Countrywide raids raids on it are condemnable,' the party tweeted.
SP spokesperson Ashutosh Verma too said the raids were the result of the BJP’s 'fear'. 'It showed that the BJP is so afraid of its defeat in the 2022 state elections that it is targeting media houses for exposing its failure,' Verma said.
'Institutions like the IT Department, CBI and the ED have been made a tool by the BJP to create fear among those opposing it,' he said.
The leader further said his party’s fight is against politicisation of these institutions.
The Income Tax Department on Thursday conducted multi-city raids against Dainik Bhaskar and Bharat Samachar on charges of tax evasion, official sources said.
The searches against Dainik Bhaskar were conducted in Bhopal, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Noida and some other locations in the country.
The premises of Uttar Pradesh-based news channel Bharat Samachar and its promoters and staffers were raided in Lucknow, they said.PTI ABN RDK