Kolkata, June 1,2023: The basic planning of the multi-crore school recruitment case was conducted at the office of the West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE) involving Trinamool Congress legislator Manik Bhattacharya and arrested party confidante Sujay Krishna Bhadra, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has alleged.
The was mentioned in the ED’s remand letter for Bhadra who was arrested by the central probe agency on Tuesday night after 12 hours of marathon grilling.
Sources said that regular meetings between Bhattacharya and Bhadra used to take place at the WBBPE office, where the latter used to come with a list of candidates willing to pay money for jobs as primary teachers.
On the basis of concrete evidence, the ED has already contradicted Bhadra’s statements that he got introduced to Bhattacharya in 2021, whereas the recovered WhatsApp chat history indicates the conversation was in 2018.
While Bhadra is in ED custody now, Bhattacharya is serving his judicial custody along with his wife and son.
Sources said that ED from the different documents, both paper and electronic, recovered from the residence of Bhadra and his close associates, have got some figures on how many candidates were recommended by him for the appointments and how much money he collected from them.
The investigating sleuths are now trying to tally those figures available to reach the final count in the matter.
Another point that is baffling the investigating officials is the statement of another accused and expelled youth Congress leader Kuntal Ghosh, who claimed during interrogation that he gave Rs 70 lakhs to Bhadra as collection money for the Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) in 2014.
Out of that amount, Rs 10 lakhs was given by Ghosh to former state Education Minister Partha Chatterjee following an instruction from Bhadra.
The ED is now trying to figure out whether Bhadra himself retained the remaining Rs 60 lakhs collected from Ghosh on this count or did he pass it on to someone else.