Monday, 30th October 2017

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Bosses set deadline, Rajeev misses

The bureaucracy took a stand that was in sharp contrast with the defiance displayed by the political leadership in February

By TT Bureau in Calcutta
  • Published 17.09.19, 3:36 AM
  • Updated 17.09.19, 3:36 AM
  • a min read
Rajeev Kumar (The Telegraph file picture)

The three senior-most officials of the Bengal government had asked Rajeev Kumar to appear before the CBI before 2pm on Monday, a deadline the former Calcutta police commissioner missed.

Bengal chief secretary Malay De, home secretary Alapan Bandopadhyay and director-general of police Virendra sent the message in notices to Kumar’s official residence.

The Monday morning despatches meant that the three state officials had acted on the CBI’s request in connection with the Saradha probe. The bureaucracy took a stand that was in sharp contrast with the defiance displayed by the political leadership in February, probably because the options this time were limited.

The CBI is now armed with a high court order. Besides, a contempt case is pending with the Supreme Court, which had ordered the CBI probe into the deposit default scandal.

The CBI had sent two letters to the DGP on Sunday, urging him in one of them to ensure that Kumar appeared before it by 2pm on Monday. The CBI made similar requests to the chief secretary and the home secretary in letters delivered at the state secretariat on Monday morning.

“The CBI quoted a portion of the Supreme Court order in which the state government was asked to cooperate with the central agency while requesting the top government officials to ensure Kumar’s appearance at its Salt Lake office on Monday. The top officials served notices separately on Kumar’s official residence on Monday morning,” a government official said.

Sources explained that the notices were served on Kumar’s official residence as he had mentioned that he would be available at the address while going on leave on September 9. Kumar is on leave till September 25.

“When Kumar went on leave, he mentioned his official residence as the place where he could be contacted. So the notices have been served on the address,” said an official.

Sources in the state home department said the DGP had on Monday sent a reply to the CBI saying the government did not know the address where Kumar would be available during his leave period. In an email to the CBI on Saturday, Kumar had sought a month’s time.