Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 27:
In a mysterious move, CBI Deputy Superintendent RN Tripathy, who had been the investigating officer for Seashore Group in Odisha Chitfund scam has been transferred to Jodhpur.
At a time when the victims complain that the investigation into the mega-scam has slowed down, the transfer of Tripathy, who joined Bhubaneswar CBI less than a year ago and had been making good progress in the investigation, raises serious questions.
While some experts, on conditions of anonymity, point it out to internal politics of CBI and his possible fallout with top bosses, others point out to external pressure- as Seashore group was well connected to the who’s who of business and politics in the state. An all-out investigation, obviously, would have revealed the dirty deeds of many.
After joining Bhubaneswar CBI on November 18, 2014, Tripathy had raided the houses of 18 accused in the scam including bigwigs such as Rajya Sabha MP Pyari Mohan Mohapatra, two retired IAS officers, broker Subhankar Nayak, many businessmen and others involved in money-trail. Besides, it was widely discussed that the diary seized from Subhankar’s house had the names of many influential people including IAS and IPS officers, politicians and journalists among others.
CBI, under his leadership, had also questioned MP Mohapatra, MP Rabindra Jena, Senior Journalist Lalit Pattajoshi, MLA Prabhat Biswal, IPS officers Satish Gajbhiye and Rajesh Kumar, and Naveen Patnaik’s close aide Saroj.
The agency submitted its preliminary chargesheet on March 7, 2015 and had named three persons, including company Chief Prashant Dash. The chargesheet contained witnesses of 456 persons along with list of seizures made by CBI.
It may be mentioned here that earlier this year CBI SP of Bhubaneswar Manish Kumar Sinha was also shunted out in a similar fashion as we reported here. Some other reports, however, suggested that the transfer was unavoidable as Sinha’s promotion was due.