CBI moves SC against WB govt in Saradha scam: Report

CBI files plea with SC against Mamata govt in Saradha chit fund scam: Report

This comes as the political climate of the state becomes tensed in anticipation of Mamata’s battle with the ambitious BJP

West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee. Credit: PTI

The CBI has filed a contempt plea against West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, accusing her government of “constant, deliberate and wilful non-cooperation” in its probe of the Saradha chit fund scam, according to an Indian Express report.

The CBI said Banerjee’s government was trying to escape the process of law and disturb the investigation. It also sought to link the chief minister to certain persons accused in the case.

This comes as the political climate of the state becomes tensed in anticipation of Mamata’s battle with the ambitious BJP in the upcoming state assembly polls.

On December 23, the CBI filed an application saying that an investigation by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) revealed that Mamata had a good relationship with former Rajya Sabha MP Kunal Kumar, one of the accused in the case, based on call records examined.

The investigative government agency is especially interested in the role of former Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar in the scam, who had overseen the SIT investigation into the scam. Mamata had personally protested CBI’s decision to seek custodial interrogation of Kumar.

In its application, therefore, the CBI wrote that these facts pointed to a “concerted institutional connivance and a complete breakdown of rule of law and constitutional machinery” in the state.

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The CBI is now a political agency, claimed Trinamool Congress MP Kalyan Banerjee, asking the agency why it was not arresting Mukul Roy and Suvendu Adhikari, co-accused in the scam who are now aligned with the BJP.

“Six years back, the CBI was given the investigation because of the allegation that the state machinery was not helping in the probe. After six years, the agency is saying the same thing,” Banerjee told The Indian Express.

The CBI has claimed in its plea to the Supreme Court that it has found more substantiating evidence against Kumar, the Commissioner of Police in Bidhanagar when the SIT probe in the case was going on. The agency alleged that Kumar tried to protect persons in the case and there was evidence connecting the ruling party of West Bengal “financially and otherwise” with Saradha group.