SC declines urgent hearing of CBI plea against Kolkata Police chief

IANS

New Delhi: The Supreme Court will hear on Tuesday a CBI plea against Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar who is accused of allegedly destroying evidence related to the Saradha chit fund scam.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi declined a plea by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta seeking an urgent hearing on Monday.

Describing the situation as “extraordinary”, Mehta said: “We fear evidence will be destroyed.”

In response, the Chief Justice said: “We were late in reaching the court by a few minutes because we were reading your application… There’s no evidence of what you’re saying right now.

“If you show one proof they are tampering or even remotely thinking of it, we’ll come down so heavily that they will regret it.”

The applications seeks to restrain the Kolkata police commissioner from tampering with evidence.

Another one for initiating contempt against the West Bengal Chief Secretary, Director General of State Police and Kolkata police chief were filed by the CBI on Monday.

The agency has sought direction to the state government to cooperate in the investigation of the scam and make available Rajeev Kumar for questioning.

The apex court gave the CBI a day’s time to place on record material to show that the State or its police were “engaged in or planning to destroy evidence connected with the investigation of the scam”.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee continued her sit-in protest in Kolkata on Monday over the Central Bureau of Investigation’s attempt to question Kumar in connection with a ponzi scheme scam.

The Trinamool Congress supremo has accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bharatiya Janata Party chief Amit Shah of attempting to destabilise her government.

The top court on May 9, 2014 handed over to CBI the investigation into the Rs 10,000 crore that were collected by Ponzi companies involving 25 lakh depositors.

The number was based on claims filed before a Commission of inquiry in West Bengal and Odisha.

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