“Look into the terms of reference of the Inquiry Commission”

As it does not have the required infrastructure, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in an affidavit has said it cannot probe the Saradha group scam unless the State government provided additional support, advocate Lakmi Gupta, appointed as amicus curiae by the Calcutta High Court, submitted before the court on Tuesday.  A Division Bench of Justices A.K. Banerjee and M.K. Chaudhuri sought Mr. Gupta’s assistance, while hearing a public interest litigation petition demanding a CBI probe into the multi-crore scam.

The Bench also sought Mr. Gupta’s advice on whether the probe should be handed over to the central agency.

 Questioning the CBI’s impartiality, Mr. Gupta referred to the recent observations of the Supreme Court in connection with the probe in the coalgate scam and the admission made by the agency.

  The amicus curiae also ruled out the setting up of a committee comprising investigating officers from central agencies and the State government, pointing out that it would “not be feasible considering the practical side of the investigation.”

The State government, the amicus curiae suggested to the court, could probe the scam and though there were allegations that two MPs of the ruling party might be involved “there is no evidence or documents to raise suspicion on the entire State machinery as a whole.”

 On the issue of returning money to the investors, he advised the court to look into the terms of reference of the Inquiry Commission constituted by the State government in this regard and broaden them if required.