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SJDA CEO G. Kiran Kumar gets 14 days jail custody

G. Kiran Kumar, the IAS officer arrested
G. Kiran Kumar, the IAS officer arrested in connection with alleged embezzlement of government funds, was remanded in 14 days' judicial custody by a court here today.

The CID that is investigating the defalcation of around Rs 60 crore at the Siliguri Jalpaiguri Development Authority didn't seek the extension of Kiran Kumar's custody.

"After arresting the former CEO of the SJDA (Kiran Kumar), the CID produced him today in the additional chief judicial magistrate's court in Siliguri. The investigating officer told the court the CID had found certain things during the probe and the interrogation of the IAS officer. As we need to verify them, we pleaded that he be sent to jail custody. He will be produced in the court again on August 3," said Sudip Roy Basunia, the additional public prosecutor at the ACJM court.

Sources said the CID had told the court that the arrested official was influential and if he got bail, he would destroy evidence. So, the sources said, the CID appealed to the court not to grant him bail.

Kiran Kumar had been arrested by the CID on July 15. He was the CEO of the SJDA from 2011 to 2013 when over Rs 60 crore was allegedly misappropriated in connection with several projects, including construction of three electric crematoriums and a sewerage system and installation of CCTV cameras.

Basunia said today: "During the investigation, the former SJDA official was taken to Mainaguri, where the electric crematorium is supposed to be installed. He had given every payment without verifying any documents, site plans and cost estimation. His specimen signature was also taken today. The signature will be verified by a hand writing expert."

Siliguri mayor and CPM leader Asok Bhattacharya said he had doubts about the CID probe, as the investigating agency didn't seek Kiran Kumar's custody today. "I have nothing to say about the court order. But I have doubt about the investigation by the CID as they had taken him into custody for four days and all of a sudden, they did not seek an extension of the remand today. They took Kiran Kumar to the proposed electric crematorium site at Mainaguri and returned immediately. We are also demanding that the rest of the board members of the SJDA be interrogated properly," said Bhattacharya.

Jeevan Majumdar, the general secretary of the Darjeeling district Congress, said the case should be probed by the CBI as the CID is a part of the state government.(TT)

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