chit-fund scam: CBI to question Kolkata top cop in Shillong today
Kolkata: Kolkata Police commissioner Rajeev Kumar reached Shillong, on Saturday, to field the CBI questions in connection with the multi-crore Saradha chit-fund scam.
Police chief Rajeev Kumar, his counsel Biswajit Deb and senior IPS officers Javed Shamim and Murlidhar Sharma arrived at the probe agency’s office at 11 am, according to sources.
Kumar’s counsel and the two IPS officers were asked to leave the CBI office within 30 minutes, while, Kumar was interrogated at the highly secured CBI office at Oakland area in the Meghalaya capital where three senior CBI sleuths from Delhi reached on Friday.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday had directed the Kolkata Police chief to appear before the CBI and “faithfully” cooperate in the investigation of cases arising out of the Saradha chit fund scam, while making it clear that he will not be arrested.
The Supreme court had earlier this week asked Kumar to cooperate with the CBI. The apex court also said that the Kolkata police chief cannot be arrested but he has to make available all evidence to the probing agency.
The interrogation was scheduled a day after Kolkata Police raided two properties of a company it said was linked to Nageswara Rao, the former interim director of CBI.
The raid was carried out at two offices of the company – one in central Kolkata and the other in Salt Lake City.
Kolkata Police, however, officially said the raid was conducted as the company was not registered as per law.
This came just days after the ugly face-off between the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government and the Narendra Modi government at the Centre was triggered by CBI sleuths being detained by police after they showed up at the residence of Kumar, alleging he had destroyed evidence related to the chit fund scams.
On Sunday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had lashed out at Modi government saying that the Centre is destroying institutions in the country and CBI officers are acting on the Prime Minister’s orders. She has also begun a dharna near the Metro Cinema in central Kolkata.
Mamata said, “If they (Modi Government) want to impose President rule in the state, we are ready for it.”
Following the allegations that the CBI’s attempted raids were born out of the ruling BJP’s vendetta politics, Banerjee called on an ‘sit-in strike’ for three days, and only ended her protest after the Supreme Court protected the top cop from arrest.
The top court had said that, though, the Kolkata police chief cannot be arrested but he must join the CBI probe into the chit fund scam and asked him to appear in a neutral place i.e in Shillong for questioning.