Nov. 1: A police team from Haldia today questioned in Visakhapatnam the three Haldia Bulk Terminals (HBT) officials who were allegedly abducted at gunpoint on Saturday night and sent packing from the Bengal port town.
“A Bengal police team came to our office in the morning. They spent about one-and-a-half hours. They asked us to narrate the entire incident chronologically. They asked us a few questions and took down notes. For example, they asked if we could recognise the abductors. We said it was not possible as they were wearing monkey caps. The police team was decent while talking to us,” one of the three officials told The Telegraph over phone.
East Midnapore police chief S.K. Jain said the team would return to Haldia tomorrow. “We are carrying out investigations.”
A team of three officials from the state intelligence branch today visited Haldia and spoke to current and sacked HBT workers and residents. An official of the team said: “It was a routine visit. We had gone to enquire about the law and order situation in the port area in the aftermath of reports of agitation by workers. We will submit a report to the western zonal office of the IB in Durgapur.”
No minimum guarantee: CPT
Calcutta High Court is scheduled to take up tomorrow HBT’s termination of the contract with the Calcutta Port Trust (CPT), which as already rejected the announcement.
The CPT is expected to contend that HBT’s demand for minimum guaranteed cargo of 7.5 lakh tonnes a month was outside the purview of the contract.
The CPT has said HBT’s failure to resume cargo operations “is purely because of absolute mismanagement of… internal affairs and lack of co-ordination with law enforcing agencies”.
Saying it has suffered “enormous financial loss”, the CPT has demanded that HBT pay compensation before removing machinery from the port.