Calcutta HC rejects appeals against CBI probe into Bengal teacher recruitment

Sep 02, 2022 03:54 PM IST

The Calcutta high court in June ordered a CBI probe into primary school teacher appointments over allegations that those who failed the teacher recruitment test were appointed after paying bribes

KOLKATA: A division bench of the Calcutta high court on Friday rejected a bunch of appeals against the high court’s June order that cancelled recruitment of 269 primary school teachers and led to a court-monitored probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The primary school teacher whose recruitment was cancelled by the high court had filed the appeal. (File Photo)
The primary school teacher whose recruitment was cancelled by the high court had filed the appeal. (File Photo)

“The division bench of justices Subrata Talukdar and Lapita Banerji upheld all orders of the single bench of justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay including the order of a court-monitored CBI probe. As the probe will be monitored by the court, the federal agency has been asked to submit reports to the court periodically. This will minimize chances of laxity,” Firdous Samim, the lawyer who filed the initial petition that led to the CBI probe, said.

CBI is also probing allegations of irregularities in the recruitment of teachers and non-teaching staff in government-run secondary and higher secondary schools in West Bengal.

In June this year, the high court’s bench of justice Gangopadhyay ordered CBI probe into allegations of irregularities in the recruitment process and terminated the services of 269 primary school teachers accused of using fraudulent means to make the cut.

This order was challenged by many of the people adversely affected by the verdict. Among those who had filed the appeal were West Bengal’s primary education board, Trinamool Congress leader Manik Bhattacharya who was removed as chairman of the primary education board by the high court, and the 269 candidates whose recruitment was cancelled.

Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya, senior advocate and Communist Party of India (Marxist) Rajya Sabha member, welcomed the ruling. “A section of people were trying to spread propaganda that the single bench overstepped its jurisdiction. Friday’s order of the division bench proves that the single bench order was right and justice had been done,” he said.

The Enforcement Directorate which also started investigating the money laundering charges in relation to the CBI case, arrested former state education minister Partha Chatterjee and his aide Arpita Mukherjee. Nearly 50 crore cash was seized from two flats.

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