Bengal deploys 10 IPS officers to assist SIT probing post-poll violence

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A day after the Calcutta High Court observed that the three-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) formed by the court to investigate lesser crimes that happened after the elections is not functioning according to the instructions, the state government deployed 10 IPS officers to assist the SIT in the probe. The CBI that has formed four teams is already looking into the serious crimes like rape and murder.

The 10 officers include ADG South Bengal Siddh Nath Gupta, ADG Western Range Sanjoy Singh, IGP Bardhaman Range B L Meena, IGP North Bengal D P Singh, DIG, Railways Soma Das Mitra, DIG Malda Range Praveen Kumar Tripathy, DIG Barasat Range Prasun Bandopadhyay and DC Reserve Force Subhankar Bhattacharya.

Two officers of Kolkata police — Additional CP-III Tanmoy Bahttacharya and Joint CP Nilanjan Biswas — have been entrusted with the responsibility of looking into the incidents under the jurisdiction of Kolkata police.

The five-judge bench of the High Court on August 19 ordered the constitution of the SIT comprising IPS officers Soumen Mitra, Suman Bala Sahoo and Ranbir Kumar to look into the allegations other than murder and sexual assault. The High Court had said the working of the SIT shall be “overviewed by a retired Hon’ble Judge of Hon’ble Supreme Court, for which separate order shall be passed after taking his/her consent”.

The Court observed that it was aware that the SIT was not functioning and added that if required steps would be taken. In the order, the Court had directed both the CBI and the SIT to file a status report before it within six weeks.

The SIT has divided the state into five zones – Headquarters, North Zone, South Zone, West Zone and Kolkata police. Two IPS officers will be dedicatedly working for each zone. Sources in the state home department said that each IPS officer will form their own team and look into the specific complaints and report it to SIT within a specific time frame.

There was a delay of almost a fortnight to create the SIT team, despite Sahoo writing to the government about the Calcutta High Court order. The state government has set up the team just before it decided to move the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

The CBI, which is supposed to file a status report on post-poll violence investigation of grave nature in six weeks, has registered 38 cases so far. The four joint directors of the CBI have visited Nandigram, Cooch Behar, Nadia and parts of North 24 Parganas.

–IANS

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