Kolkata: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) probing the money trails in West Bengal’s alleged teaching and non-teaching staff recruitment scam in the government-aided schools, on Saturday, launched simultaneous raids to at least six places of close aid of arrested TMC MLA Manik Bhattacharya, official sources said.
Federal agents began searching teachers’ training institutes at Barasat, Kaikhali in North 24 Parganas, Mahisbathan at Sector V in Salt Lake, APC Road, Dr. Kartick Bose Street, and Gopal Mallick Lane early on Saturday.
The raids are being conducted at the coaching center of a close aide of arrested Trinamool Congress legislator MC MLA Manik Bhattacharya in connection with the Bengal teachers’ recruitment scam, the sources added.
The central investigation agency had earlier arrested Bhattacharya and he was produced before a Special Court on 11 October, which remanded him to ED custody for 14 days till 25 October.
The same agency had also Partha Chatterjee, then minister in the state government, and his close associate Arpita Mukherjee on 23 July.
Bhattacharya, a legislator representing the Palasipara in Nadia, was also a former president of the West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE).
He was sacked by a Calcutta High court order from the post in June last.
The ED has already filed a prosecution complaint against eight accused persons, including Partha Chatterjee, and Arpita Mukherjee.
The special court took cognizance of the prosecution complaint on September 19, 2022, after finding that a prima facie case had been made out against the 8 accused persons.
The ED had seized cash amounting to a total of Rs. 49.80 crores and gold & jewelry valued at more than Rs 5.08 crore and provisionally attached properties worth Rs 48.22 crore in the case taking the total seizure/attachment to Rs 103.10 crore.
The investigation is in progress.