Thursday, July 18, 2024

Municipalities’ recruitment scam: Central agencies face Calcutta HC’s ire over ‘faulty’ probe

The officers of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday faced the ire of Justice Amrita Sinha of the Calcutta High Court for faulty probe process in the multi-crore municipalities’ recruitment case in West Bengal.

During a hearing in the matter on Friday, Justice Sinha observed that since all related documents and information are available in the open forum, what was the purpose of the central agencies to send a separate notice to the municipal authorities seeking information about the details of municipalities’ acts.

“Was this a part of the probe in this matter,” Justice Sinha questioned the ED.

She also sought a list of names of the investigating officers of the two central agencies probing the municipalities’ recruitment case.

“I will review all the aspects in the matter and if necessary, I will order the formation of a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the matter. If necessary, the matter will be investigated under the direct supervision of the Calcutta High Court,” Justice Sinha observed.

She also questioned the interrogation style of certain ED officers.

“They are raising questions the answers of which are readily available in an open forum,” Justice Sinha observed.

The counsel of the West Bengal government also questioned how serious the two Central agencies are about the probe in the municipalities’ recruitment scam.

The order for central agency probe into the scam was originally given by Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay of the Calcutta High Court. Later, the matter was referred to the bench of Justice Sinha. However, she had also upheld the order of Justice Gangopadhyay’s bench and asked the central agencies to continue with their investigation into the matter.

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