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Monday, April 22, 2024

CBI visits slain BJP leader Avijit Sarkar’s residence, records family’s statement

On Monday, August 23, a delegation of the CBI reached slain BJP leader Avijit Sarkar’s residence in central Kolkata’s Beliaghata and spoke to the deceased’s brother, Biswajit Sarkar. Avijit Sarkar was a victim of West Bengal’s post-poll violence and was killed in his house on May 2 shortly after the assembly election results were out.

Biswajit was taken to Nizam Palace, the CBI head office in Kolkata, where his statement was recorded. Biswajit had accused the local police of not registering his FIR, upon which his brother’s dead body was sent for post mortem by the Calcutta High Court and a DNA test was also conducted.

“The DNA report has been submitted. It is in the custody of the court. Since the victim’s body is still lying in a morgue, we will appeal for its release for the last rites once the CBI is done with the investigation,” lawyer Priyanka Tibrewal had informed the media in July. She is representing the petitioner in court. 

The deceased had recorded a Facebook Live video just minutes before his unfortunate death in which he is heard accusing a political leader and calling the police for protection. A dog lover, Avijit had adopted several street dogs, and puppies birthed by one such stray were also brutally killed by the TMC goons.

“They destroyed my house, right in the presence of Narkeldanga police officials. They thrashed my innocent puppies to death. Aara ki Manush? (Are they even humans?) …I am informing everyone (about my ordeal) through this video. Why are they committing atrocities on me? I don’t mind if anyone supports any political party or wins the election. But they are ruthlessly destroying my house, and NGO office,” he concluded.

Sources in the CBI informed that the footage of the Facebook live session will be presented before the court as Avijit’s dying declaration. His phone was handed over to Akhilesh Singh, the Deputy Inspector General, CBI by Avijit’s grandfather.

“Since afternoon on May 2, several unknown faces were loitering outside our house. A large number of people were hurling abuses and threatening to kill my grandson if he stepped out of the house,” said the slain BJP leader’s grandfather. “Avijit, me and other members of the family had called Narkeldanga police station officer-in-charge Shubhjit Sen to alert him about the situation and had requested for security,” he added. 

“It was all in vain, no one came for our help,” added Biswajit. “After the poll results were announced, TMC workers tied a television wire around my brother’s neck and dragged him along the road. They smashed his head with a stone. The police did not register a complaint even though we pleaded several times,” stated the BJP worker’s brother just a few days before the CBI sleuths landed in Kolkata.

He also alleged that the police tried to threaten his family. The police allegedly told the family that they will decide whose names will go in the complaint. “We refused to comply,” shared Biswajit. He is hopeful that justice will be delivered after the case has been transferred to and being investigated by the CBI.   

The CBI has sent Avijit’s phone to the Central Forensic Lab. They have also collected Avijit’s DNA and the autopsy report from the Calcutta High Court. Officials of the central investigative agency had visited the crime scene twice earlier and recorded statements from the victim’s mother, grandfather, and grandmother.

A five-judge bench led by acting chief justice Rajesh Bindal directed the Central agency to probe the post-poll murders and rapes in the state. A three-member SIT has also been formed by the order of the court to investigate the state-wide arson and loot carried out systematically soon after TMC’s victory was announced. 

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