Julio Ribeiro, who has held top positions in the police and was Ambassador to Romania, feels that the deep frustration felt by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah at BJP’s humiliating defeat in West Bengal Assembly elections has made them open the ‘cage’ of CBI and direct it to take on Mamata Banerjee. The case which the CBI has taken up – Narada Scam – is seven years old when six Trinamool Congress leaders were caught on tape receiving cash. The case was entrusted for an investigation to the CBI in 2014. Even now the CBI has arrested only four of them and left out the other two because they are now in the BJP.
In an article in Scroll.in, Ribeiro points out that “Suvendu Adhikari, the designated leader of opposition BJP, and Mukul Roy, another of those elected on the BJP ticket, who had crossed over from the Trinamool Congress just before the elections, had also received bribe money and were captured taking the cash on tape. But the governor does not seem to have inquired from the CBI how and why they have been left out of the net when the papers were placed before him for sanction to prosecute. In fact, Adhikari received Rs 5 lakh whereas the others got only Rs 1 lakh.”
Nothing is surprising if the CBI is behaving like the private army of Modi and Shah. It has always acted like this in politically sensitive cases. Here are just two instances to prove the point.
A zealot RTI activist, Shehla Masood was shot dead in front of her house around 11 AM on August 16, 2011. Soon thereafter top police officers, led by then State police chief S K Raut and then Additional DGP (Intelligence) R K Shukla (who recently retired as CBI director) , reached there and were said to have tampered with the evidence. The inquiry was handed over to the CBI which, after spreading a web of lies, got convicted by a pliant judge of two ordinary Muslim women for conspiring to murder Shehla. Before the case was handed over to the CBI, a sting operation was conducted by Headlines Today. When D S Tomar, Inspector-in charge of the police station of the area, was asked about the ‘shoddy investigation’ by his team, his reply was, inter alia: ‘Within half an hour, the DGP, IG, SSP, SP, Additional SP, almost everyone was there. We started following their instructions and took only those things which they asked us to and left the rest.’ For disturbing evidence in a murder case, these police officers would have gone to jail with their post-retirement benefits forfeited. It is anybody’s guess who could have assured them that nothing would happen to them. The CBI did not interrogate them nor did it interrogate those influential politicians about whose certain activities Shehla had sought information through RTIs.
Special CBI Judge at Indore B K Paloda wrote the verdict as CBI dictated, blatantly in violation of law at places.
The Godhra train burning case and its aftermath resulting in a massacre, in which both Modi and Shah were involved, were investigated by the CBI and also by high-profile retired Supreme Court judges forming part of Inquiry Commissions. Till today we do not know how Modi had promptly identified the 58 ‘Kar Sevaks’ whom he claimed were burnt inside S-6 coach of Sabarmati Express and announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the family members of each of them because those travelling in that coach did not have reservations barring a few. Besides, it was claimed that the train was stopped at Signal Falia, at a little distance from Godhra station, where some people poured petrol inside S-Coach through its windows and set it afire. However, Government Forensic Science Laboratory at Ahmedabad probed the matter thoroughly and concluded that the fire was ignited by someone from inside the coach.
The CBI never tried to find out who had lighted fire inside the coach and at whose behest.