The Calcutta High Court has directed the (CBI) Central Bureau of Investigation to investigate the matter relating to the scam of municipality recruitment in the State of West Bengal.

A Single Bench of Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay asserted, “After hearing learned counsel for the parties, I direct CBI to carry on investigation in the Municipality Recruitment Scam also which have got common agents like Ayan Sil and common beneficiaries and the victim in both the cases (that is the Education Scam and the Municipality Recruitment Scam) is “public/common people at large”. For this purpose, if necessary, for conducting the investigation without any impediment, CBI may file one FIR for investigating the case relating to Municipality Recruitment Scam which has been revealed from the application filed by ED.”

The Bench said that despite service, nobody for the State is represented at the time of hearing though the advocates for the petitioner and CBI are present.

Senior Advocate Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya appeared for the petitioner while Advocates Saikat Banerjee, Billwadal Bhattacharyya, and Samrat Goswami appeared for the West Bengal Board of Primary Education, CBI, and ED (Enforcement Directorate) respectively.

In this case, an application was filed by the ED with a specific pleading that while investigating the teachers’ appointment scam, it came across the Municipality Recruitment Scam in the State which got intermingled on account of common agents and common beneficiaries. It was further prayed that a separate FIR for investigation of Municipality Recruitment Scam under the relevant provisions of IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act by the predicate agency (meaning thereby CBI) would be required.

The High Court in the above context said, “I have understood from the pleading and the submissions made by the parties that relating to application being CAN 1 of 2023 connected with WPA 9979 of 2022 in respect of which one SLP has been admitted by the Hon’ble Supreme Court that there is no connection of the present matter with that CAN 1 of 2023 and as the present application CAN of 2023 is a new and unconnected application, I have passed the above order making the brief of the investigation of the ED dated 21.04.2023 a part of this order.”

The Court observed that the CBI will file a report as to what steps have been taken by them in this regard after its order is passed and that for this purpose, the matter will appear in the list on April 28, 2023, at 2 p.m.

“I direct the Director General of Police of this state and the Chief Secretary of this State to instruct all Departments concerned under them to help and assist the CBI and ED in their functioning while investigating the scam if so requested by CBI and by ED”, noted the Court.

Accordingly, the Court issued necessary directions.

Cause Title- Soumen Nandy v. The State of West Bengal & Ors.

Click here to read/download the Order