In an unusual development which was described as “highly embarrassing” by the State government here on Saturday, the Siliguri City Police arrested District Magistrate of Malda, G, Kiran Kumar, in connection with a case involving misappropriation of funds.
Hours later, the government removed Commissioner of Siliguri City Police K. Jayaraman from his post, disapproving of his action.
“We feel the arrest was warranted only if the accused was tampering with the evidence or was likely to abscond, but nothing such was applicable in this case,” the State’s Chief Secretary Sanjay Mitra told journalists at `Nabanna’, the makeshift Secretariat in Howrah.
Describing the arrest of the District Magistrate by Mr Jayaraman as an instance of the IPS officer “exceeding his brief”, Mr. Mitra said that it was “highly embarrassing” for the State government.
“We were not informed about the developments,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mr. Kumar has been accused of siphoning off funds from the Siliguri Jalpaiguri Development Authority (SJDA) during his tenure as its chief executive officer.
He was arrested on Saturday under the charges of criminal conspiracy and criminal breach of trust under the IPC as well as under Sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act. He was produced in a local court and remanded to police custody for four days.
A complaint against Mr. Kumar was registered in March and he has been interrogated several times over the past few days.
Earlier in the day, Mr. Jayaraman himself interrogated Mr. Kumar for several hours. However, the developments took a different turn when the news of arrest reached State Secretariat.
Mr Mitra said that Mr. Jayaraman has been asked to hand over his charge and to come to the city.
“Procedurally, before taking such a big step, either the permission of the State government is required or at the least, it should be informed. But nothing was done in this regard,” he said, adding that the charges against Mr Kumar were not being taken lightly.
Jawed Shamim, Special IG & DIG, Jalpaiguri Range is scheduled to take over the charge of Siliguri City police.