Laughable, says CBI chief of Nithari witnesses accusations

March 3rd, 2008 - 9:30 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) chief Vijay Shanker Monday described as “baseless” allegations that he had put pressure on West Bengal Police to close a case against him filed by the father of a Nithari victim who was found murdered in the state last year. “It (the allegations) are based on laughable and baseless accusations,” Shanker told IANS.

Jatin Sarkar, the father of Nithari victim Pinki, had filed a complaint in the Sahanigate police station of West Bengal alleging that Shanker, CBI superintendent S.J.M. Gilani and the then circle officer of Noida police Dinesh Yadav were threatening him to take back his statements in the Nithari case.

Sarkar had told the court that Noida-based businessman Moninder Singh Pandher and his domestic aide Surendra Kohli were behind the gruesome rape-murders of 19 children in their house in 2006.

Days before he was to depose in a Ghaziabad court, his body was found drowned in the Bhagirathi river in West Bengal on Sep 1 last year. His widow, Bandana Sarkar, had alleged that he had been killed and his body dumped in the river, but the state police refused to register a FIR.

After Bandana moved the Supreme Court, the state police filed a case against Shanker, and the other two officials.

Shanker’s denial comes in the wake of a phone conversation aired on television channels Monday purportedly between an unidentified caller and the Murshidabad Deputy Superintendent of Police Santo Kumar Mitra and Inspector Dilip Kumar Ganguly indicating that they were facing intense pressure from the state director general of police (DGP) to close the case against the CBI chief.

In the conversation, the two West Bengal police officials have allegedly pointed to a conspiracy to withhold from them crucial cell phone records which could prove that threatening calls were made by some CBI officers to Sarkar’s family a couple of days before his death.

Shanker told IANS: “It is a matter concerning the West Bengal government and the state police officers, so why should I comment on this. The West Bengal police were probing the matter so the CBI does not come into the picture.”

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