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Kolkata, Jan 14 (IANS) Summoned by the CBI in the Saradha chit fund scam, Trinamool Congress general secretary and former railway minister Mukul Roy Wednesday met West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and sought 15 days time from the probe agency for his appearance. The CBI, however, turned down his request.
“We have sought 15 days’ time from the CBI, because Mukul Roy has previously fixed appointments and engagements,” said Roy’s counsel, who went to the CBI office here with the letter of request Wednesday night.
Roy said he would be busy with party work related to the by-elections to the Bongaon Lok Sabha and Krishnaganj assembly seats scheduled for Feb 13.
But the Central Bureau of Investigation rejected the request.
The Trinamool all-India general secretary, considered Banerjee’s right-hand man and No.2 in the party, had a 30-minute meeting with the chief minister at state secretariat Nabanna in the afternoon.
However, he did not take questions from media persons after the meeting.
In the morning, on returning from Delhi, Roy had said he would contact the CBI and inform officials about his appearance and also discuss the issue with his party leaders.
The Rajya Sabha member was in Delhi when the CBI Monday asked him to appear for questioning.
“I have returned today (Wednesday). I will establish contact with them (CBI) and tell them when I will go there. I will discuss (the issue) with my party leaders,” Roy said on his arrival here.
He reiterated that he was not involved in any kind of unethical activity.
Meanwhile, with many of its leaders arrested and interrogated by the CBI in the scam, the Trinamool has appointed former CBI additional director and party legislator Upen Biswas as advisor on matters pertaining to the probe agency.
“We have appointed Upen Biswas as the advisor to the party for all matters relating to the CBI. He will provide us advice and assistance on all matters relating to the CBI,” Trinamool secretary general Partha Chatterjee told media persons.
Chatterjee also ruled out removing Roy from the party post following the CBI summons.
“The question does not arise. He will remain as our all-India general secretary as also an MP. Why should he be removed only because the CBI has called him?” asked Chatterjee.
Chatterjee also accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of using the CBI as a political tool against Bengal’s ruling party.
“In the name of the Saradha probe, at the instance of BJP leaders, the CBI is being used a tool for political vendetta against the Trinamool. People in Bengal have now begun questioning the transparency and neutrality of the CBI,” Chatterjee added.