CBI Issues LOC For TMC MLA; Police Withdraws Security

KOLKATA | Updated: 26 August, 2022 12:45 pm IST
TMC MLA Manik Bhattacharya

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) served a Look Out Circular (LOC) against former chairman of West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE) Manik Bhattacharya in the case related to the primary teachers’ appointment.

CBI issued the LOC after the investigative agency could not find him in both his residences in south Kolkata and Nadia district.

Meanwhile, in an apparent move to distance itself from Bhattacharya, the state government had decided to withdraw the security arrangements that Bhattacharya was entitled to as an elected legislator.

Bhattacharya was removed from the post of WBBPE President following an order by the Calcutta high court, which also ordered the CBI probe into the primary teachers’ recruitment scam. Later, the CBI roped in the ED in the probe to investigate the money trail.

The high court had also ordered the immediate cancellation of the appointment of 269 candidates as primary teachers and observed that these candidates secured jobs despite not qualifying in the written examination, while some of them did not even appear for the same.

The high court also said that the agency sleuths probing the matter cannot be transferred till the time the investigation is complete.

Incidentally, when the Enforcement Directorate (ED) summoned Manik Bhattacharya several times, he cooperated. He was interrogated at the CGO complex on July 26. Two days later, he was interrogated by ED officers for 14 hours.

ED searched Bhattacharyya’s residence in alleged connection with the SSC scam on July 22. Bhattacharya was SSC chairman from 2014 to 2018.

Partha Chatterjee and his close aide Arpita Mukherjee were arrested by ED for an alleged SSC Scam in which close to ₹50 crore were recovered from the residences of Mukherjee.

Just like SSC, there are many allegations of irregularities in the TET examination. In this case, too, the ED wants to interrogate him more to know whether there was a transaction of big money.

TET scam surfaced in 2014 when it was alleged that during the primary selection process wrong question paper was set to confuse the eligible candidates. However, it was found that TET ineligible candidates got the selection for the post of assistant teacher in primary schools.

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