The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has completed its preliminary compliance report on the Narada sting operation, sources in the investigating agency said on Monday. Sources in the agency added that if enough proof of wrongdoing is found in the preliminary inquiry, an FIR would be registered and searches carried out at the premises of those involved.
The Calcutta High Court had set a deadline of 72 hours for the CBI to prepare the report after collection of all devices used in the sting. The Narada sting captured footage in which leaders resembling Trinamool heavyweights and legislators were purportedly seen taking bribes with a promise of favours later. A division bench of acting Chief Justice Nishita Mhatre and Justice Tapabrata Chakraborty stated that a “serious and cognisable offence” had been committed. The division bench said the reports sent by the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) in Chandigarh and Hyderabad had said the tapes were untampered.
According to sources, the report has been shared with the CBI headquarters in Delhi. The court order said: “Depending on the result of the inquiry, the CBI shall forthwith register an FIR in respect of all the alleged crimes, and proceed to investigate the same.”
On Saturday, the CBI seized all devices used in the sting from a bank locker. The probe agency also questioned Mathew Samuel, the CEO of Narada News which had carried out the sting operation. The CBI officers wanted to know how the entire operation was carried out and who funded it.
The agency has already collected documents related to the sting operation and questioned some Trinamool leaders, CBI sources said.