In connection with the coal smuggling case, a team of CBI officials raided the three homes of West Bengal law minister Moloy Ghatak in Asansol on Wednesday. Raids are being carried out in seven different locations across the state, including Asansol and Kolkata. Moloy Ghatak had previously been questioned by the ED in connection with the case. The raid today comes at a time while many Trinamool leaders, including the party’s national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee, are under investigation by federal authorities. While sacked minister Partha Chatterjee is in jail for the SSC scam, the CBI has arrested Anubrata Mondal in the cattle smuggling case.
Moloy Ghatak tweeted on Tuesday against Union Home Minister Amit Shah, saying the country’s state of affairs is “horrible under Mr Amit Shah’s watch.”
The coal scam is the same case in which Abhishek Banerjee has been questioned several times by the ED.
The CBI registered the coal smuggling case in November 2020. The allegedly illegally mined coal, worth thousands of crores of rupees, is said to have been sold by a racket operating in western West Bengal, where the Eastern Coalfields Limited operates several mines. Political leaders are said to have benefited from the coal trade.
Last year in August, the ED filed its first charge sheet in the coal smuggling case charging Vinay Mishra’s brother, Vikas, and former officer-in-charge of Bankura police station, Ashok Mishra. However, Abhishek Banerjee was not mentioned in the charge sheet. The ED recently called up eight Indian Police Service (IPS) officers from West Bengal to Delhi for questioning.