EC Removes Kolkata Police Commissioner on Opposition’s Persistence
The Election Commission on Tuesday removed Rajeev Kumar as the Kolkata Police Commissioner following persistent calls from West Bengal’s opposition parties for his shifting.
Additional Director General of CID, Soumen Mitra will replace Rajeev Kumar, who has been shifted to the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) as its additional director general, senior WB government official said.
Additional chief electoral officer Dibyendu Sarkar said that the decision was taken following the directive of the Election Commission.
Opposition Against Rajeev Kumar
Kumar was repeatedly accused of “working in favour” of the state’s ruling Trinamool Congress by the opposition parties.
BJP president Amit Shah on 29 March alleged that Kumar “had a direct role” in carrying out the “failed sting” at the behest of Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee.
BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha had alleged that two Kolkata police special branch officers had offered him “a fate amount” for smuggling cattle to Bangladesh in March.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist-led Left Front as well as the Congress have also been up against Kumar.
Who is Rajeev Kumar?
Kumar, a 1989 batch Indian Police Service officer, on 29 January took over as the city police chief, replacing Surajit Kar Purakayastha.
Kumar had superseded close to 30 senior colleagues to be appointed as the Kolkata police chief.
Out of the 30 senior colleagues Rajeev Kumar had jumped over, 25 were in West Bengal and the rest at the Centre.
While he was the police commissioner of Bidhannagar, he had led the investigation into the multi-crore rupee Saradha chit fund scam before the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) stepped in.
The opposition had accused Kumar of “subverting” the investigation into the scam in which several TMC leaders were arrested by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate.
Former Kolkata police commissioner Tushar Talukdar called Kumar’s removal by the EC “unprecedented” and “shameful for a police officer”.
(With agency inputs)