At the end of the tenure given by the Supreme Court, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed an FIR on Monday against all the 12 TMC leaders and an IPS officer who were seen accepting money on camera in the Narada sting operation video clippings.
TMC leaders Mukul roy, Sovan Chatterjee, Madan Mitra, Firhad Hakim, Iqbal Ahmed, Subrata Mukherjee, Sultan Ahmed, Kakali Ghosh Dastidar, Prasun Banerjee, Saugata Roy, Suvendu Adhikari, Aparupa Poddar and IPS officer SMH Mirza were named in the FIR. Sources said that along with the names the phrase ‘and others’ have also been written in the FIR keeping provision for summoning persons who were not featured in the clips but have been directly or indirectly involved in the scam.
Officials of CBI’s anti-corruption branch had examined the video clips and concluded that the motive behind the exchange of cash was bribery. They have been slapped with several sections of the Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Corruption Act.
It was found out that a special team of investigating officers of CBI would be formed to take the probe ahead. All the accused named in the FIR would be called for questioning and, if required, CEO of Narada News, Mathew Samuel, would also be called to get a clearer picture of the entire operation and also he might be made to sit face to face with the 13 accused while they are questioned.
Detectives are in the process of checking tower locations of the politicians at the given time to cross verify with what Samuel had stated.
On March 17, the Calcutta High Court had asked the CBI to file a preliminary report within 72 hours. The TMC had moved Supreme Court against the decision but on the Supreme Court had given the central investigating agency a month to file the preliminary report.
Political leaders have reacted in various ways. CPI(M) MLA Sujan Chakraborty defined it as a step ahead in the fight against the ‘scamstars and unmasking the inspiration behind’. "WB CM must ensure d resignation of d tainted leaders n ministers. Would she dare or unless wait fr d ppl 2 mk dem resign? (sic)" he tweeted.
State Congress president Adhir Chowdhury said, “Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee kept on changing her stance since the time the scam was unearthed. What will she say now?”
BJP state president Dilip Ghosh said it was expected. “The entire state was looking forward to it. The court had said that it was a genuine video and now law will take its own course,” he said.
TMC national secretary general Dr Partha Chatterjee said the party would do whatever needed to be done. “It is not a simple FIR. The timing of the release of the video clips should also be looked into,” Chatterjee said.