SC asks Kolkata police chief to cooperate with CBI

The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar to make himself available before the CBI and 'faithfully' cooperate with the agency in investigation of cases arising out of the Saradha chit fund scam probe.

The apex court said Rajeev will appear before the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for investigation at Shillong in Meghalaya and no coercive steps, including the arrest of the Kolkata Police chief, will take place during the course of the probe.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi also issued a notice to Rajeev and sought his response before February 20, the next date of hearing on the allegations by the CBI that he was tampering with electronic evidence and the SIT headed by him provided the agency with doctored materials.

The apex court also directed the West Bengal chief secretary, the director general of police (DGP) and the Kolkata Police commissioner to file replies on the contempt pleas filed against them by the CBI on or before February 18.

The bench, also comprising justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjeev Khanna, said on the consideration of replies of the chief secretary, the DGP and the Kolkata police commissioner, the court might prefer the personal appearance of these three authorities on February 20.

The apex court's secretary general will inform them on February 19 whether they are required to be present before the apex court on February 20, the bench said.

During the hearing, which lasted for about 15 minutes, Attorney General (AG) K.K Venugopal and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta narrated the sequence of events of the Saradha scam case since 2014 .

They alleged that Rajeev was not cooperating in the investigation of the cases arising out of the chit fund scam, which was handed over to the CBI by the Supreme Court.

The Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the West Bengal police, of which Rajeev was the functional head, was not handing over the complete documents over to the CBI and some of the documents given by the SIT were doctored, Mehta and Venugopal alleged.