Trinamul councillor in murder net

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By OUR CORRESPONDENT in Barasat
  • Published 30.03.07
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Barasat, March 30: Orissa police today arrested Shanker Addya, a Trinamul Congress councillor of the Bongaon municipality, for allegedly masterminding the murder of his colleague from the Congress, Tapas Mitra, in Puri last year.

Mitra, 44, a member of the municipality chairman’s council in charge of education and culture, was shot dead on the Puri beach on June 22.

A three-member team from Puri’s Sea Beach police station came to Bongaon, about 75 km from Calcutta, last evening and arrested Addya and his associate Nantu Ghosh.

They were produced before the sub-divisional judicial magistrate in Bongaon today for a transit remand and will be taken to Puri tomorrow.

“We helped Orissa police arrest the duo from their Bongaon homes. A few months ago, we raided Addya’s house while investigating a counterfeit currency note racket,” said Praveen Kumar, the North 24-Parganas superintendent of police.

Preliminary investigations by the Orissa police suggest that business rivalry was the “principal motive” behind the murder.

“Mitra would help local traders get municipality tenders. Among them were tenders, each worth lakhs of rupees, for cutting nearly 1,000 trees along the Bongaon-Chakdah Road last year. Mitra’s rivals planned to kill him when they lost their business,” said an official of Sea Beach police station.

Nearly two months after the murder, the CID arrested a 28-year-old contract killer — Samir Mondal alias Munna — from a hideout in Nadia’s Taherpur. Two other accused — Bapi and Swapan — were arrested around the same time.

According to an official, Munna, who was paid Rs 11 lakh for bumping off Mitra, had told the police about Nantu’s involvement.

“Nantu had accompanied Mitra on the trip to Puri. He supplied Munna information about Mitra’s movements,” said P.K. Patnaik, the officer-in-charge of Sea Beach police station.

According to Patnaik, the accused had thrice tried to kill Mitra in Calcutta. They made another attempt when the councillor went to Chilka during his Puri trip but failed.

Mitra’s widow Arpita refused to comment on the arrest.

However, Trinamul Cong-ress MLA from Bongaon Sau- gata Ray alleged that Addya had been falsely implicated. “This is the CPM’s game plan to topple the board,” he said.