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CBI vs Rajeev Kumar: Stage set for fresh showdown between Modi and Mamata

FE Online
CBI officials leaves Bhabani Bhawan after serving notice to former Kolkata CP (PTI photo)

Former Kolkata police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar has not yet joined the CBI probe at Kolkata’s CGO complex office and has sought more time to appear before the probe agency in connection with the ongoing probe into the Saradha chit fund scam. In a letter to the CBI, Kumar has stated that he is on leave and is on a personal visit to Uttar Pradesh’ s Varanasi. Earlier on Sunday, the central investigative agency had summoned former Kolkata top cop for questioning in connection with the case at 10 am. As per the latest media reports, the CBI is not likely to give more time to the senior IPS officer.

On Saturday, the CBI issued a lookout notice against former Kolkata cop to prevent him from leaving the country. A team of CBI officers were deployed earlier in the day outside Barasat court. Earlier in February, the CBI officers were prevented from entering Kumar’s residence. The matter reached the apex court, after which Kumar was asked to cooperate with CBI in the probe. Kumar was questioned in Shillong for more than three days.

The central probe agency wants custodial interrogation of Rajeev Kumar in connection with the probe as he was heading the then Special Investigation Team (SIT), which was formed by the Mamata Banerjee-led government to investigate the Ponzi scheme scam-related case before the CBI took over.

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Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate is also likely to interrogate Kumar in connection with the involvement of politicians in the Saradha and Rose Valley chit fund scams, reports Times of India.

Last week, the Supreme Court had turned down Kumar’s request for extending the seven-day protection from arrest. The 1989-batch IPS officer is accused of destroying evidence related to the Saradha chit fund scam. The Saradha chit fund scam relates to cheating lakhs of people to the tune of Rs 2,500 crore by promising higher rates of return on investment.

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On Sunday, after the lifting of the Model Code of Conduct by the Election Commission of India, the West Bengal government had reinstated 11 IPS officers, which include Rajeev Kumar, Anuj Sharma, Gyanwant Singh, Devendra Prakash Singh, Shyam Singh, Abhishek Gupta etc. Rajeev Kumar has been appointed as ADG, CID (Additional Director General- Crime Investigation Department).

The Trinamool Congress-led government also sent Amit Kumar Singh, Natarajan Ramesh Babu and Sunil Kumar Choudhary on “waiting for posting order”. The Mamata Banerjee-led government’s order for reinstating Kumar as ADG-CID might escalate the feud between the state and Centre. In order to assume charge as ADG-CID, Kumar needs have relieving orders from Ministry of Home Affairs which haven’t been issued yet.