New Delhi: Former Kolkata Police commissioner Rajeev Kumar on Monday told the Supreme Court that he has been targetted by the CBI as part of the larger conspiracy between two BJP leaders in the Saradha chit fund case.
Kumar in his affidavit named BJP leaders Mukul Roy and Kailash Vijyawargiya behind the larger conspiracy and told the apex court that an audio clip is available in public domain where they clearly speak of "targeting" a few "senior police officers".
"The sudden inexplicable turn by the petitioner/CBI in pointing out problems with the investigation and targeting the alleged contemnor seems to be borne out of a larger conspiracy between two senior leaders Mukul Roy and Kailash Vijaywargiya of the BJP, the ruling party at the centre," the affidavit said.
Kumar claimed that he has been targetted due to political vendetta and "this apprehension is corroborated by the contents of an audio clip that was reported widely by the press and electronic media at the time where the said leaders clearly speak of 'targeting' a few 'senior police officers' of the state".
Earlier in the day, Kumar told the apex court that he could not file his response on Saturday to the CBI's plea seeking his arrest in the multi-crore Saradha chit fund scam and sought adjournment of the hearing.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi took note of the submission of senior advocate Indira Jaising, appearing for Kumar, and postponed the hearing on the plea of the probe agency till April 22.
"Indira Jaising, senior counsel, submits that the counter affidavit of the respondent No 3 (Kumar) was required to be filed on Saturday (April 13) but Saturday being a holiday for the Registry, she may be allowed to file the same today. The said affidavit may be brought on record during the course of the day. Rejoinder affidavit, if any, be filed on or before April 20. The matter will be listed on April 22," the bench, also comprising Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna, said.
The apex court had sought Kumar's response on April 8 on CBI's plea seeking his arrest in the the chit fund scam.
The apex court, on February 5, had granted protection from arrest to Kumar while directing him to appear before the CBI and "faithfully" cooperating into the investigation of cases arising out of the scam.
The central probe agency has sought vacation of the order so that it can arrest and interrogate Kumar.
"This is the interim application (IA) of the CBI seeking custodial interrogation of Rajeev Kumar. Issue notice. Let the matter be listed for hearing on April 15," the bench had said.
The bench had also allowed CBI to file a fresh affidavit regarding its allegations that telecom operators -- Vodafone and Airtel -- were not cooperating with it in the probe.
In its plea to the apex court, the agency has said the recall of the order granting Kumar an interim protection from the arrest was necessary "to unravel the entire gamut of the larger conspiracy in the ponzi scam cases".
The CBI also sought the court's directions to West Bengal authorities to comply with the court's earlier orders "in letter and spirit" and not to create any hurdle in the CBI probe or try to "intimidate, harass and scare the agency officials" probing the cases.
"Recall the interim protection granted to Rajeev Kumar for no coercive steps, including arrest, granted by this court by order dated February 5, 2019 to enable the CBI to subject him to interrogation in accordance with the law to unravel the entire gamut of larger conspiracy in these ponzi scam cases and its subsequent investigation," the CBI's application said.
The agency said it needs to examine Kumar and other police officials to recover the material evidence and to investigate into the acts of omission and commission on the part of Bidhan Nagar Police commissionerate and SIT officials in causing concealment of the evidence collected by them during investigation.
Earlier, the apex court had termed as "very very serious" the revelations made by the CBI in its status report relating to the interrogation of Rajeev Kumar.