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Teacher Recruitment Scam: Calcutta HC Orders Police Commissioner To Be Present At Kolkata Airport Today Evening To Take WB Minister Paresh Adhikari Directly To CBI Office

Aaratrika Bhaumik
19 May 2022 10:02 AM GMT
Teacher Recruitment Scam: Calcutta HC Orders Police Commissioner To Be Present At Kolkata Airport Today Evening To Take WB Minister Paresh Adhikari Directly To CBI Office
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The Calcutta High Court today directed the Police Commissioner of Bidhannagar Police Commissionerate to be present at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Airport, Kolkata on Thursday evening so that Minister of State for School Education Paresh Chandra Adhikari can be directly taken from the airport to the CBI office at Nizam Palace in Kolkata for questioning over the alleged illegal appointment of his daughter as a teacher in a government-aided school.

The direction was issued while adjudicating upon a plea filed by an aggrieved candidate who had alleged that she had been deprived of the job despite having secured higher marks than the Minister's daughter in the recruitment examination. It had further been claimed by the petitioner that she had secured 77 marks in the recruitment examination, while the Minister's daughter had secured only 61.

Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay earlier in the day on Thursday had directed the Minister to appear before the CBI at 3pm today for questioning despite vehement opposition from the Minister's counsel on the ground that the Minister is currently at Cooch Bihar and thus would take time to appear before the office of the CBI.

In the afternoon, the counsel for the Minister apprised the Court that the Minister shall be unable to attend the CBI office at 3pm today since he was in Cooch Bihar and is now flying to Calcutta though a Spice Jet flight which is scheduled to reach Calcutta today in the evening at 18:30 hours.

Accordingly, Justice Gangopadhyay directed the Police Commissioner of Bidhannagar Police Commissionerate to immediately get in touch with the airport authorities so that as soon as Adhikari comes out from the flight, he can be take by the police authorities to the CBI office at Nizam Palace directly.

"If Mr. Adhiakri is not found in the said flight which will start from Bagdogra at 17:00 hours it will be treated as a hoax created to save himself from the Court and the CBI", Justice Gangopadhyay further warned.

The Court further observed that the matter will be dealt appropriately if any violation of the Court's order takes place.

Thus, the counsel appearing on behalf of the Minister was instructed to communicate the order to his client by whatever means suitable intimidating him that police authorities of Bidhannagar Police Commissionerate will be waiting for him at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Airport to take him directly to the CBI office.

The matter is listed for further hearing tomorrow at 10:30 am.

It may be noted that on Tuesday Justice Gangopadhyay had ordered a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the recruitment of political science teachers for Class X1 and XII in the state-run schools of West Bengal and had also directed Adhikari to appear before the CBI by 8pm on Tuesday evening. The Judge had further opined that it is imperative that steps are taken to 'cleanse the whole situation of polity' and had accordingly recommended that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and the Governor Jagdeep Dhankar should consider removing the minister from his post.

In the same matter, Justice Gangopadhyay in a special hearing on Wednesday night directed the CBI to take assistance of central forces to secure the West Bengal School Service Commission (SCC) building in Kolkata over claims of evidence tampering pertaining to the case of alleged illegal recruitments in West Bengal government schools. He had further ordered for the preservation of CCTV footage by observing, "The Secretary of the School Service Commission is directed to produce the CCTV footage before me at 12.30 a.m. tomorrow. The Secretary is to preserve all the digital information and the database if not already destroyed." He had further directed that no one should enter the building till 1 pm on Thursday without the leave of the Court and ensure that the CCTV footage of the office is available by Thursday noon.

Consequently, on Thursday morning, Justice Gangopadhyay modified his earlier order for sealing of the office of the State's School Service Commission till 1pm on Thursday by granting liberty to the Chairman, Advisor to the Chairman, Assistant Secretary and stenographers of the Commission to enter the office without any hinderance caused by the central forces deployed there.

On Thursday, a Division Bench of Justice Harish Tandon and Justice Rabindranath Samanta recused from hearing the appeals preferred from Justice Gangopadhyay's order on personal ground.

This is not the first time that the Division Bench has recused from hearing an appeal from Justice Gangopadhyay's order in this matter. Last month, the Division Bench had recused from hearing an appeal from Justice Gangopadhyay's order for a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the appointment of 'Group-D' (non-teaching staff) in sponsored Secondary and Higher Secondary schools under the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) on the purported recommendation by the West Bengal School Service Commission (WBSSC).

Case Title: Babita Sarkar v. The State of West Bengal & Ors

Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Cal) 194

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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