The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is carrying out raids at six locations in West Bengal, including the residence of state Law minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Moloy Ghatak in Asansol in connection with the alleged coal scam case, reported news agency ANI.
Five locations in Kolkata and one in Asansol – residence of Moloy Ghatak – are being searched by the investigating agency in connection with the scam.
West Bengal | CBI raids underway at 6 premises of TMC leader and West Bengal minister Moloy Ghatak – five in Kolkata and one in Asansol – in connection with coal scam.Visuals from one of his premises in Kolkata. pic.twitter.com/pSwl2CDZky
— ANI (@ANI) September 7, 2022
The investigating agency, aided by a huge contingent of central paramilitary personnel, carried out searches in these properties. Women officers were also part of the team.
“As his name surfaced in the coal smuggling scam, we need to find out what was his role in it. We have evidence of Ghatak’s involvement in the scam,” said a CBI officer, as reported by PTI.
Ghatak was not present at his residences when the raids took place.
Family members of the law minister were asked to sit in one room and their phones taken away by the CBI sleuths during the raid at his house in Asansol, reported PTI citing the CBI officer.
Heavy deployment of security forces was seen around Ghatak’s residence.
On September 20, 2012 the CBI had registered a case in the matter under section – 120B r/w 420 IPC r/w 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. After the completion of the investigation, a chargesheet was filed against Grace Industries Limited and Mukesh Gupta, director of the company in the court on October 28, 2014, reported ANI.
The Court on August 10, 2015, took cognizance of the offence and issued summons to the accused persons for their appearance before the Court. During the course of trial, a total of 34 witnesses had been examined by the prosecution/CBI to prove its case.
Several Trinamool leaders, including the party’s national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee were recently questioned by the CBI. While former Bengal minister Partha Chatterjee is in jail in connection with the SSC scam, Anubrata Mondal was arrested by the CBI in connection with the cattle smuggling case.
Ghatak has skipped several other summonses of the ED in connection with the scam.
(With inputs from ANI and PTI)