December 17, 2016 12:57:49 am
The police have seized Rs 1.42 crore in demonetised notes in Kolkata and over Rs 7 lakh in Rs 2,000 notes in West Midnapore district, arresting five persons in the two cases.
Kolkata Police recovered Rs 1,42,50,000 in defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes from an organisation in central Kolkata and arrested three persons on Thursday night, a senior officer of the city police said.
“We have arrested three people identified as Pradeep Roy (40), Sanjeeb Ghosh (40) and Arun Singh (55) under section 41 of CrPc. Interrogation is on,” said Joint CP (crime) Vishal Garg.
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While Roy is a resident of Sainkrail, Howrah, Ghosh is from Hoogly and Singh is from Kolkata. Based on a tip-off, police nabbed them from Mangolene at around 2.30 am. They were allegedly picked up from outside a building in Dalhousie, close to the police headquarters in Lalbazar. Police sources said the money recovered was in denominations of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes (14,624 Rs 500 notes and 6,938 Rs 1,000 notes). Police arrested the three accused after they failed to produce relevant papers explaining why they were carrying such a high amount of cash at such an odd hour.
During interrogation, the accused claimed they had come from a company to meet Govinda Agarwal, a chartered accountant. “We are investigating if their statements are true. We are also looking for Agarwal, who may also be interrogated,” said an officer. Another officer said, “We are probing whether this was part of a hawala deal or not.”
Police allegedly suspected that the accused could be agents attempting to turn black money into white, and are planning to trace their phone calls to find other people who may be involved. Burrabazar, Posta, Bowbazar and Dalhousie were hubs for conversion of black money into white, a source said.
Meanwhile, in West Midnapore district, two people — Subrata Majhi and Purnashankar Ganguly — both residents of Najarganj, were arrested with over Rs 7 lakh in new currency notes in their possession. According to police sources, a total of Rs 8 lakh (372 new Rs 2,000 notes and 1,076 notes in denominations of Rs 100) was recovered from them. They were nabbed from Godabazar in Debra.
Based on a tip-off, the local police started following the Scorpio car in which the accused were travelling and intercepted them. They had bundles of currency, but were unable to give a satisfactory reply to police’s queries, following which they were arrested and later remanded to police custody for three days by a court. “During interrogation, they revealed they were going to Pingla to hand over the money to someone. We are trying to find out who this person was. We are questioning them further and will also inform the income tax authorities.”
Since the implementation of demonetisation, several agencies across the state have made multiple seizures. The Kolkata STF had seized Rs 31 lakh in new Rs 2,000 notes and Rs 2 lakh in Rs 100 and Rs 50 notes from Kolkata businessman Manish Sharma, who had contested the 2016 West Bengal Assembly elections on a BJP ticket. He was arrested along with 6 of his associates with Rs 33 lakh. In another case, the Enforcement Directorate had seized Rs 10 lakh in new currency notes on December 2 from a doctor’s chambers in Salt Lake.
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