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Notice to block Priyanka exit

New Delhi/Calcutta, Oct. 22: The CBI has sent notices to the immigration department to ensure that Ashok Todi and Priyanka Todi do not leave the country without the investigative agency’s knowledge.

“We are not so much worried about Ashok Todi since the stakes are very high for him. He is not likely to leave the country. But yes, if we do not get the opportunity to talk to Priyanka, it will be a big setback to the investigation,” a senior CBI officer said, recalling the Bharti Yadav case.

Bharti, the daughter of former don and politician D.P. Yadav, is a key witness in the murder case of her “close friend” Nitish Katara. Her brother and cousin are the main accused.

Soon after the murder, Bharti was sent abroad, ostensibly for higher studies, making it tough for the prosecution. Eventually, Bharti returned.

CBI officials expressed confidence that they would be able to secure Priyanka’s presence when they wanted to speak to her. The state CID had questioned her.

“If we cannot do it in the normal course, we will obtain an order from the court,” the CBI officer said. The agency is keeping a notice ready under Section 160 of the CrPC, which will be used to ask Ashok Todi to produce his daughter for questioning. The section deals with investigators’ power to require witnesses’ attendance.

The notice will be sent thrice. If ignored, the CBI can move court.

Asked when Ashok Todi would be questioned, the officer said the investigators are waiting to collect all available information.

Promoter quizzed

In Calcutta, the CBI team questioned a real estate promoter whom the CID had overlooked despite a complaint.

Hassan Ali, a Palm Avenue-based promoter, and Abdul Majid, an associate, were quizzed today after Rizwanur Rahman’s family alleged that the duo acted on behalf of Todi and pressured the family to send Priyanka back.

Both Ali and Majid were asked to depose before a CBI team at Nizam Palace.

“We had told CID officials that Majid had turned up thrice on September 1 and tried to force us to send Priyanka to her parents. He had suggested that the couple should be asked to go to Digha and then ensure that Priyanka went back to her parents,” said Jalisur Rahman, one of Rizwanur’s uncles.

“Priyanka told us that Majid used to work for Ali, a close aide of her father in the real estate business. We had named these two people, but the CID never questioned them,” Jalisur said.

Ashok Todi’s brother Pradip and a relative Anil Saraogi were among the 16 people the CBI interviewed today.

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