KOLKATA: The detective department arrested a person late on Saturday in connection with a 2017 Hare Street police station FIR which implicated him and an IRS officer for cheating and corruption. A city court on Sunday remanded Govind Agarwal in judicial custody till November 24 and directed that he be given medical help.
A senior police officer said, “Agarwal was arrested after a long probe. He is one of the FIR-named accused in a Hare Street police station case.” Police sources said the 2017 FIR against Agarwal was lodged on the basis of a report by a detective department sub-inspector. In the complaint, it was alleged that the IRS officer, then posted in the income tax department in Kolkata, had “used” Agarwal as a “middleman” to park funds in various companies. One of these companies, it was claimed, was linked to a group which is being probed by CBI and Enforcement Directorate (ED). Sources said the ED had also inquired into this specific complaint.
Alarmingly worrisome inputs from CA fraternity-politically inspired operation overzealousy afoot @KolkataPolice hea… https://t.co/7AOrlO5Qrg— Governor West Bengal Jagdeep Dhankhar (@jdhankhar1) 1606009923000
Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar in several posts on Twitter after the arrest dubbed it as a “politically inspired operation.” He alleged that the arrest “targets CAs” to thwart probe by central agencies regarding coal and cattle mafia in Bengal. He said, “Beneficiaries in ‘uniform’ and power in preemptive mode to compromise team members (in) coal (and) cattle mafia raids to neutralise or impede actions against them. Those spearheading this extra legal antidotal operation are oblivious that these misadventures are often counterproductive.”
Biplab Goswami, Agarwal’s lawyer, said, “He had attended the interrogation six times he was summoned. He cooperated with them fully. He has even responded to a Kolkata Police questionnaire in August. Also, if the FIR names a central government officer, do cops have the jurisdiction to probe it?”
Sources said in addition to the complaint, police have also cited items seized from Agarwal’s possession before. This reportedly included Agarwal’s travel-related documents and also those of the central government officer. Some of these documents, police claimed, including those on the the usage of a car, are linked to the people being probed by CBI and ED in the ongoing Ponzi cases.
The Bengal home department did not immediately respond to the Governor’s allegations. The state BJP leadership did not make any formal statement on the arrest. State parliamentary affairs minister Partha Chatterjee, responding to the Governor’s Twitter posts, said, “Instead of tweeting he can formally join a political party. He is bringing disgrace to his pride and honour.”