After Partha Chatterjee and Anubrata Mondal, the West Bengal Minister of Law is under the scanner of a central agency. CBI has been conducting raids in 5 of his houses in Asansol and Kolkata along with his government residence since Wednesday in connection with his alleged involvement in the coal scam. MLA Moloy Ghatak was interrogated at his official government residence in B.B.D Bag and his younger brother Asansol’s Deputy Mayor Arijit Ghatak had to face CBI as well
CBI officials and a team of CRPF jawans arrived on Tuesday at a Sitalpur guesthouse late at night. In the morning around 30 armed personnel accompanied 6 CBI officers to the ministers house in Apkar garden. A few hours later the officers went to Ghatak’s ancestral place in Chelidanga and later 2 of them progressed to another house of his in Apkar garden. All of the houses were kept under the guard of CRPF and the phones of the people present in the houses were confiscated. Simultaneously raids were also conducted in Kolkata, one of which belonged to his son and at a house of one of his close associates.
The investigators claimed that they had information about certain incidents which occurred between 2015 to 2020. The main accused Anup Maji’s staments pointed towards Ghatak which led to the raids. Three of his phones were seized but the SIM cards were returned. A lock belonging to one of the almirahs had to be broken as the key was missing. The family members stated that only books related to law were found in the cupboards. The investigators commented that Ghatak failed to answer several questions but the minister said that he acted in compliance with the law by assisting them. His bank and income related documents are in CBI custody but the 14 thousand found with him was not seized. His wife Sudeshna who was present during the raid said that the CBI officers were well behaved. Abhijit Ghatak commented that CBI failed to produce a search warrant while the minister called it an effort to defame him. He also made a bold statement that if anyone accuses him of purloining, apart from BJP supporters, he will quit politics.
Several followers gathered in front of Ghatak’s Apkar house to raise slogans against the investigative body and the Central government. Meanwhile the Chief minister Mamata Banerjee said that the state police was not aware of the raid. Ghatak has been summoned by ED on 14th of September at its Delhi headquarters regarding the coal scam. Allegedly he had refused to show up apart from once despite several requests being made by ED although he asserted that he had sent all the required documents to the body. CBI officials communicated that Ghatak might be brought under further questioning in the future.