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Calcutta HC Stays FIR against CBI Officers Investigating West Bengal Coal Scam

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 Shivani Thakur

Published on: July 1, 2022 at 16:36 IST

The FIR filed by State police officials against CBI officers for allegedly harassing regular citizens during the ongoing investigation into the State’s coal smuggling scheme was given an interim stay by the Calcutta High Court for a period of six weeks.

The State police authorities would not be permitted to take any further action in the FIR that names CBI officers, including Umesh Kumar, who is in charge of the investigation, in accordance with the order.

The relevant FIR was submitted at the Bishnupur police station in the South 24-Parganas Diamond Harbour subdivision. A Diamond Harbour resident complained to the Bishnupur police station that CBI agents had threatened him and some other individuals during an interrogation related to the cases of livestock and coal smuggling.

The complainant further claimed that CBI officers had been pressuring them to make statements in accordance with their directives, and Umesh Kumar, a CBI officer, was specifically mentioned in the complaint.

Justice Bibek Chaudhuri observed,

In the meantime, there shall be stay of further investigation into the offences punishable under Sections34/120B/166/167/193/195/195A/196/465/467/468/471/506( ii) of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 in connection with Bishnupur Police Station Case No. 361/2022 dated 27.05.2022 for a period of six weeks.”  However, the Court emphasized that such a temporary injunction would not prevent the CBI from carrying out its probe into the alleged coal fraud while the current criminal charge is pending.