The Centre on Saturday reiterated that it was committed to unravelling the truth and the entire conspiracy behind the Purulia arms-drop case. In a late-night statement, the government said that “any new fact emerging at any time” in the case that dated back to 1995 would be looked into by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
The statement comes a day after the Communist Party of India (Marxist) demanded a judicial probe into the case to uncover the network responsible. The party said the arms-drop was aimed at fomenting violence to destabilise the Left Front government in West Bengal.
The government's statement said that recent allegations by the wanted and proclaimed offender in the case, Niels Christian Nielson alias Kim Davy, were “mischievous and aimed at misleading the prosecuting agency and a court in Denmark, which is seized of the matter of his extradition to India to face trial.”
The statement said: “Notwithstanding what Kim Davy and Peter Bleach, a convict in this case, have said to a section of the media, the fact remains that no government agency connived or helped them in their heinous act.”
It said the case has remained under investigation, and “any new facts will be looked into by the CBI in a professional manner.”
“Once Kim Davy is extradited and put to trial in an Indian court of law, he will get ample opportunity to explain his contentions and his defence to the court, which will decide on his culpability as per evidence and the law,” the three-page statement said.
“The government and the CBI are acutely conscious of the fact that nothing should be done at this stage that will prejudice the extradition proceedings or the intended trial of Kim Davy after his extradition to India,” it said.
On Friday, the CBI dismissed Davy's claims that the clandestine arms-drop from a foreign plane in 1995 in Purulia was carried out by “political forces” at the Centre in order to destabilise the Left Front government in West Bengal.
The government had taken the incident “very seriously” right from the beginning and the CBI was provided all-out support in its investigation in and outside the country, the statement said.
“The Government of India has facilitated the free, impartial and professional investigation of the case at every stage. The Government of India is committed to unravelling the truth and the entire conspiracy behind the crime and to bring all the guilty to justice,” it said.
“Letters Rogatory were also sent to several countries, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Singapore, the U.K., Bulgaria, Latvia and Denmark. Investigations were conducted through mutual legal assistance arrangements in the U.S., South Africa, Netherlands, Ecuador, Brazil and Sweden,” the statement added.
Referring to Davy, the statement said that earlier he had admitted to his role in the crime not only in front of the print and visual media — including the BBC and in a book written by him — but also before a Danish court at Hillerod in Copenhagen.
“His self-serving allegations and attempt to give a political colour to his crime, and thus deflecting the judicial process of his extradition, is not substantiated by the evidence and facts,” it said.
On Bleach, a co-conspirator, the Centre said he was convicted and sentenced to life by a court on the basis of evidence collected by the CBI. His conviction was never set aside by any superior court in India.
The statement recalled that after the probe, the CBI filed a charge sheet in 1996 against 13 persons, and subsequently, two more charge sheets were filed in the case. The judgment in the case was pronounced on February 2, 2000. The then government granted presidential pardon to remit the sentences with respect to five Latvians in 2000 and to Bleach in 2004.