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5 Mar 2017

Jalpaiguri Trafficking Case: Mrinal Ghosh, Debasish Chanda Remanded To 6-day Police Custody

Jalpaiguri Trafficking Case: Mrinal Ghosh, Debasish Chanda Remanded To 6-day Police CustodyAmitava Banerjee | 4 March 2017: Mrinal Ghosh, District Child Protection Officer (CDPO,) Darjeeling and Dr Debasish Chanda, Member, Child Welfare Committee (CWC) were remanded to 6-day police custody by a Jalpaiguri court on Saturday in connection with the child trafficking and illegal adoption racket. The CID has also found connections between BJP leader, Juhee Chowdhury who is also accused in the case with a bureaucrat in North Block, Delhi. 
Anurag Shrivastava, District Magistrate, Darjeeling stated: "The District Child Protection Officer, Darjeeling has been suspended with effect from Saturday. It is a contractual post as are all posts under Integrated Child Protection Unit. We are still awaiting the reply to the show-cause from the CWC." 
The accused Chandana Chakraborty, the owner of the Bimala Sishu Griho, Ashroy Short Stay Home and North Bengal People's Development Committee; her brother Manas Bhowmik and Sonali Mondal, Chief Adoption Officer were also produced at the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court in Jalpaiguri on Saturday. They were sent to 14-day of jail custody. 
"The CID had prayed for 14 days of remand for Ghosh and Chandra. The CJM court has remanded the two to 6 days of police custody" stated Pradeep Chatterjee, Assistant Public Prosecutor, Jalpaiguri. 
Alokesh Chakraborty, defence lawyer for Ghosh remarked that Ghosh is innocent. "As there is no home for orphans and destitute children in Darjeeling, he used to send these children from Darjeeling to Bimala Sishu Griha in Jalpaiguri. As a DCPO after having sent the children to this Home he used to go on regular visits to this home. This is part of his duty" claimed Alokesh Chakraborty. 
Shanker Dey, Defence Lawyer for Dr Chanda stated that his client had been appointed by the home as a doctor. He used to visit the Home twice a week to check on the children. "He has not received a single rupee from the home till date. He has been falsely implicated" claimed Dey. However, the CID sleuths claim otherwise. 
They state that there is ample evidence of monetary transactions between Ghosh and the owner of the homes. The Doctor too used to walk on the behest of Ghosh. Both were sending children to Jalpaiguri from Darjeeling without informing the District Administration, Darjeeling. Records of the homes were also manipulated. 
Ghosh's wife Sashmita Ghosh, who is the DCPO, Jalpaiguri was interrogated throughout the day by the CID sleuths in Pintail Village on the outskirts of Siliguri town. CID sleuths have in their possession a gate pass of North Block, Delhi dated February 10. On this day Juhee accompanied by Chandana had paid a visit to North Block where they had met a bureaucrat. CID is of the opinion that this bureaucrat used to facilitate Juhee's visit to the corridors of power.

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