Saradha Scam: CBI grills Kolkata Police chief Rajeev Kumar in Shillong

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 09 February 2019, 01:35 PM
Rajeev Kumar is staying in a private guest house and is not allowed to meet anyone. (Image Credit: ANI)
Rajeev Kumar is staying in a private guest house and is not allowed to meet anyone. (Image Credit: ANI)
HIGHLIGHTS
    • Rajeev Kumar reached Meghalaya’s capital Shillong on Friday. 
    • Rajeev Kumar is accompanied by three IPS officers of the Kolkata Police.
    • CBI wants to question him as he was heading the SIT to probe Saradha scam.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is questioning Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar in Shillong today. Kumar - who reached Meghalaya’s capital Shillong yesterday evening from Kolkata via Guwahati by road – is being questioned in connection with Saradha chit fund scam. He was accompanied by three West Bengal cadre IPS officers and his younger brother.

"Kumar will be questioned in CBI office, Shillong branch by a team of interrogators in connection with the chit fund case on Saturday," a senior official had said on condition of anonymity.

Kumar is staying in a private guest house and is not allowed to meet anyone. He has been provided adequate security by the Meghalaya Police during his stay in Shillong.

The CBI wants to question Kumar, a 1989-batch IPS officer, as he was heading the SIT formed by West Bengal government to probe Saradha and other ponzi scheme cases.

Earlier, the CBI had failed to quiz Kumar after its officials were allegedly roughed up and detained for some time when they went to question him at his residence in Kolkata on Sunday in connection with its probe into the Saradha and Rose Valley chit fund cases. 

The incident had triggered an unprecedented tussle between the West Bengal government and the Centre following which the top investigating agency had moved to the Supreme Court. A day later, the Supreme Court directed Kumar to appear before the CBI and "faithfully" cooperate into the investigation but made it clear that he should not be arrested.

The court said "to avoid all unnecessary controversy", it was directing Kumar to appear before the agency at a neutral place in Shillong, Meghalaya.

The agency has also called former Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP Kunal Ghosh to Shillong on February 10. The CBI is relying on a 91-page letter from Ghosh, who was expelled by TMC, to the Enforcement Directorate, detailing the role of Kumar in handling the ponzi scam probe after the main accused Sudipta Sen and Debjani Mukherjee, both promoters of Saradha group of companies, had fled to Kashmir, officials said in Kolkata.

Sen and Mukherjee were arrested in 2013 from Kashmir.

"State police were first to enter the premises of Saradha Group post-collapse and there are allegations that important documents which could have provided important leads were removed to cause the disappearance of evidence," a senior CBI official had said on the condition of anonymity.

The agency may confront Ghosh and Kumar to cross-check their claims, CBI sources said.

"I got a telephone from the CBI asking me to be in Shillong on Sunday. I will be there and cooperate in every possible manner," Ghosh told PTI.

With Agency Inputs

First Published: Saturday, February 09, 2019 07:31 AM
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