Kolkatta: Jyoti Priya Mallick, the Minister-in-Charge of West Bengal’s Forest Affairs and Non-Conventional and Renewable Energy Sources, was taken into custody by the ED in connection with a West Bengal food scam.
From 2011 till 2021, Jyoti Priya Mallick served as the Minister-in-Charge of the West Bengal government’s Food and Supply Department. The ED has claimed that at this time, the state’s public distribution system (PDS) for food grains saw a number of anomalies and corruption.
Some of the key aspects of this case are:
Based on a Federal Investigation Report (FIR) about the food scam that the CBI filed in 2017, the ED filed a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
Jyoti Priya Mallick, the Minister in charge of the Food Department, is accused of abusing his authority and stealing and distorting food grains intended for the Public Distribution System.
The estimated value of the scam is in the thousands of crores of rupees. Large amounts of food grains intended for PDS were forcibly transferred to the open market in order to profit.
Jyoti Priya Mallick is accused by the ED of accepting payments from several rice millers to enable them to steal food grains from government godowns. The Minister then engaged in money laundering.
Jyoti Priya Mallick allegedly resisted questions from the ED and was evasive when asked about his role. As a result, the ED used the PMLA to arrest him.
Jyoti Priya Mallick was given 14 days of custody by the Ld. CMM court to the ED till November 12, 2023.
Following his ED arrest on October 27, 2023, Jyoti Priya Mallick appeared before a Special CMM Court in Kolkata, West Bengal.
In order to question the Minister further about the food fraud case, the ED had requested that he be held in detention for 14 days.
Jyoti Priya Mallick was granted 14 days of extended detention (ED) until November 12, 2023 by the Learned Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (Ld. CMM) Court following the hearing of the arguments presented by both parties.
- Documentary evidence allowed the ED to create a prima facie case against Jyoti Priya Mallick.
- It was necessary to confront him with a variety of the evidence gathered throughout the inquiry during his detention interrogation.
- Being a strong minister, he might sway witnesses if he wasn’t held in detention.
- Because of the seriousness of the charges against him, ED custody is necessary for in-depth questioning.
- The judge ordered that the ED detention meet all legal requirements for due process.
- During detention, the accused must undergo a medical examination.