Rujira Narula Banerjee coming to the Enforcement Directorate (ED) office on Thursday with her son in lap to face questioning in connection with the coal smuggling scam has taken the agency officials by surprise.
After Rujira, the wife of Trinamool Congress national General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee, was grilled for six hours with her two-and-a-half-year-old son Ayansh in her lap, two questions are haunting the officials of the central probe agency.
Was this action on her part just an attempt to draw public attention or sympathy? Or was it a well thought out plan to close all future possibilities of being summoned for questioning outside Kolkata.
According to ED sources, initially the agency had summoned Rujira for questioning in New Delhi. However, she challenged that in the Supreme Court, where her counsel argued that it will not be possible for her to stay away from her kid in the current situation. The apex court accepted that argument and directed the ED to question her in Kolkata.
“Was her appearance at the ED office on Thursday meant to prove her argument that her son cannot stay without her? It seems that to prove that point, she kept her son close to her through out the course of questioning,” said an ED official, who did not wish to be named.
He added that on humanitarian ground, the interrogating officials on Thursday had to give breaks to Rujira at more frequent intervals than generally allowed during any normal interrogation, thus limiting the actual questioning time to an extent.
The ED officials are also not ruling out the possibility of Rujira making an attempt to draw public sympathy.