Calcutta  HC dismisses PIL seeking NIA or CBI probe into attack on ED officials

The Calcutta High Court on Thursday dismissed a PIL seeking NIA or CBI investigation into an attack on Enforcement Directorate officials in West Bengal’s Sandeshkhali, observing that the ED has all the expertise and wherewithal to handle the situation.

The court said that the petitioner, who is a practising advocate, appears to have not done any research on the matter and that the PIL is based solely on newspaper reports.

Dismissing the PIL, a division bench presided by Chief Justice T S Sivagnanam said, “The matter concerns an attack upon the officials of the Enforcement Directorate and the petitioner is not here to advise as to what the said central agency has to do as they have got all the expertise and wherewithal to handle the situation.”

The petitioner prayed for transfer of investigation into the attack on ED officials from the state police to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) or the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), claiming that the local police would not be able to hold the probe in an impartial manner since the accused is a leader of the ruling party in the state.

The ED has said that three of its officials were injured and their mobile phones, laptops and wallets “looted” when they went to Sandeshkhali in North 24 Parganas district to search the premises of Shajahan Sheikh, a leader of the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), on January 5 in connection with their investigation into the alleged ration distribution scam in the state.

Sheikh is absconding and the ED has issued a look-out circular (LC) against him, alerting all land, air and sea ports to stop his exit from the country.

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