Calcutta High Court has extended Rajeev Kumar protection from arrest

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On Tuesday The Calcutta High Court extended the protection from arrest it had granted former Kolkata police commissioner Rajeev Kumar till 22 July. The court had earlier ordered that Kumar could not be arrested and no coercive action taken against him till 10 July.

The CBI wants to question Kumar in connection with the Saradha chit fund case, which was originally investigated by a Kolkata police SIT headed by Kumar. The high court will hear arguments by Kumar to quash CBI’s notices sent to him during the next hearing on 15 July, while the CBI will contest this.

The apex court had directed Kumar to appear before the CBI in Meghalaya’s capital Shillong, a neutral venue, to answer their questions. Although Kumar did appear before them, the CBI decided they wanted to take him into custody as his answers weren’t satisfactory. The matter once again went to the Supreme Court, which granted Kumar protection from arrest till 17 May.

Kumar is currently serving as Additional Director General, CID, West Bengal. The CBI continue to want to conduct custodial interrogation of him, and are reportedly contemplating filing a supplementary chargesheet against him to name him as a co-accused, which would make this easier. They sent a notice to Kumar in May asking for him to attend questioning in this context.

On Tuesday, Kumar requested the court for an extension of the protection and also to be allowed to move out of Kolkata rather than being kept under house arrest, on the grounds that he needed to do this to fulfill his duties with the CID. The court granted the request for the extension, but has not yet made a decision on his house arrest.

The CBI asked for a day-to-day hearing from 8 July to wrap the case up before the original period of protection granted by the court ended on 10 July.

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