SMH Mirza, the suspended IPS officer, who has been remanded to 14-day jail custody today by the special CBI court after being arrested by the CBI in connection with the money trail in the Narada pay-off scandal, in no uncertain terms told news persons that he had given money to the Trinamul Congress-turned BJP leader Mukul Roy. Responding to newspersons’ query while being produced in the special CBI court this morning by the CBI, on whether he had given any money to the BJP leader Mukul Roy, he said, “I had given money to Mukul Roy.”

In the same breath, he hastened to add, “ Showing nothing in the footage does not prove that he did not take money. Investigation is on, the truth will emerge”. The former Burdwan police chief also contended that he was feeling “relieved” and claimed that the pressure which was mounting on him for the last three years had eased out considerably. “I’m feeling relieved now since I could able to disclose everything that had happened regarding the alleged money transaction,” he told newspersons. Rebutting the charge, Mr Roy, however, countered Mirza’s contention and raised the “conspiracy theory” yet again to blunt his one-time trusted lieutenant’s charge.

He even questiond the rationale behind the receipt of money, “Why should I take money? What was the reason for me to take money? I did not accept any money. The footage did not show anything resembling me that I was taking money like others. This is a deep-rooted conspiracy being hatched by the chief minister to vilify me and the BJP”. Partha Chatterjee, Trinamul Congress secretary general rubbed it saying, “The investigation is on now. The ultimate result will prove everything.” A CBI officer on Sunday while carrying out the “reconstruction process” at Roy’s Elgin Road residence with Mirza in tow claimed that a “huge tranche of cash had changed hands in the flat as revealed by Mirza.

A videography of the entire sequence of events from the point of entering the flat by Mirza and down to lead- up to the money transaction at a room as revealed by the suspended IPS officer in the flat was reconstructed. The videographed sequence would be tallied with the sting video conducted by the Narada news CEO Mathew Samuel masquerading as a businessman of a fictitious company Impex consultancy in 2014, said an officer who was part of the agency team that carried out the exercise led by Narada case investigation officer ( IO) Ranjit Sinha yesterday. CBI court remands Mirza in judicial custody: A special CBI court remanded suspended IPS officer S M H Mirza in judicial custody till 15 October in the Narada sting operation case.

Rejecting Mirza’s bail plea, Judge Anupam Mukhopadhyay remanded him in 14 days’ judicial custody on a prayer by a CBI lawyer. Mirza was the Burdwan superintendent of police when the sting operation was allegedly carried out by Samuel Mathew of Narada news portal in 2014. He was arrested last week and produced in the court, which had initially remanded him in the agency’s custody for five days. Opposing the suspended officer’s bail plea, the CBI counsel today prayed for his judicial custody, claiming that he is an IPS officer and an influential person. He said Mirza, if released on bail, may try to influence witnesses. Mirza’s lawyer, however, submitted that the officer was suspended in November 2017 and as such there was no question of him being an influential person. The lawyer also submitted that Mirza has cooperated with the investigation all along and has appeared before the CBI whenever he was summoned by the investigators.

The purpose of Mirza’s arrest has been served, with he being questioned along with another accused and the subsequent reconstruction of the events surrounding the alleged pay-offs which happened at a flat in south Kolkata, the counsel added. The video tapes that had surfaced ahead of the 2016 West Bengal assembly polls and persons resembling senior Trinamul Congress leaders and Mirza were seen accepting money from representatives of a fictitious company in return for favours. The Calcutta High Court had ordered a CBI probe into the Narada sting operation case on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) which sought an impartial investigation into the video footages.