ED or Enforcement Directorate investigators claim that millions of rupees were taken not only for illegal sale of jobs, but also for transfers and promotions in the education department. They said that the control of the withdrawal was in the hands of former education minister of West Bengal, Partha Chatterjee, and a group made of some officers loyal to him used to collect the money. According to ED, the School Service Commission (SSC) and the primary TET case have the potential to recover more than Rs 100 crore. The officials of the investigating agency also claim that several sources have been found in this regard. Every statement of Mr. Partha’s friend Arpita Mukherjee is being verified.
Statement from Investigating Agency
An officer of the investigating agency said, “The entire state education department is suspected to have turned into an ‘illegal money machine’. Mr. Partha was not only the mastermind behind the illegal recruitment. Transfers and promotions of teachers through lakhs of rupees, he was responsible for everything. It now appears that he was the mastermind. Investigation revealed that crores of rupees were looted in transfers and promotions besides recruitment through SSC and recruitment of primary teachers through TET.”
Explaining how the illegal looting of money was going on, ED claimed, a group was formed in the education department with several officers close and loyal to Mr. Partha. Investigations have revealed that the same group extorted lakhs of rupees from various candidates for illegal recruitment, transfer and promotion of teachers. The investigators said that some important information regarding the transfer and promotion has been found in the investigation into the allegations of corruption in the recruitment. Mr. Partha’s personal secretary Sukanta Acharya is being interrogated from time to time. He was also called to the ED office on Thursday. The investigators said that he was interrogated facing Mr. Partha.
Investigators claimed that according to Arpita’s statement, people close to Partha used to regularly go to Diamond City and Belgharia flats with money and packets of money were kept there. Once packed, it was sometimes taken outside. Mr. Partha himself would occasionally visit those flats in the evening to inquire about the money. He used to leave at night.
According to the investigators, numbers of several ministers, MPs, MLAs, other influential persons, education department officers, many small and big leaders of the ruling party in different parts of the state were found on Arpita’s mobile phone. A senior official of the investigating agency said, “Arpita being close to Partha Chatterjee, various political and influential people may have called Arpita and their numbers may be in Arpita’s mobile. All those people will also be interrogated. Strict legal action will be taken against them if there is evidence of their involvement in the corruption case.” Investigation has already revealed that two government officers close to Partha are involved in the corruption case. Soon his personal secretary Sukanta will be summoned again. According to the investigators, Mr. Partha, other influential people and education department staff used to travel to Diamond City and Belgharia flats.