Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday gave the benefit of doubt to DGP S.K. Singhal in the fake phone call case of suspended IPS officer Aditya Kumar and his conman friend Abhishek Agrawal, who impersonated the Patna High Court Chief Justice, in a bid to get the former off the hook.
“As soon as we learnt about someone making a fake phone call to the DGP, investigation took place and the caller appeared to be a fraudster. The DGP realised the mistake had been made from his side. So, don’t make it an issue. He will retire from his service in the next two months,” he said.
The statement of Bihar Chief Minister came at a time when opposition leader Sushil Kumar Modi demanded a CBI inquiry in this matter.
“The caller was in contact with DGP S.K. Singhal since August this year. He made dozens of calls to him but he (the DGP) did not investigate the identity of the caller.. whether he is genuine or fake. The role of Bihar DGP is under a question mark and only the CBI can unearth the truth behind it,” Modi said.
“The role of the DGP in the matter to save a SSP rank officer is suspicious. The investigation is currently underway under the Economic Offence Unit (EOU) which comes under the DGP. Hence, fair investigation cannot be possible,” he claimed.
The DGP, in his first reaction on the issue, said: “This is a very serious issue and its investigation is currently underway. I want to suggest that everyone avoid going on speculation. Let investigation take place, we will share all information at the right time.”
Aditya Kumar, a 2011 batch IPS officer, allegedly planned with Agrawal to apply pressure on Singhal to get a clean chit in a case registered against him in Gaya’s Kalyanpur police station.
He was the SSP of Gaya when he was booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including for assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty, putting person in fear of death or of grievous hurt, in order to commit extortion, cheating, impersonation, forgery and more in Fatehpur police station having case number 312/2022 on the direction of Chief Minister himself. Besides him, SHO, Fatehpur, Sanjay Kumar was also a co-accused.
Agrawal, impersonating Chief Justice of Patna High Court Sanjay Karol, made more than 30 calls to Singhal, applying pressure to remove the name of Aditya Kumar from the FIR. Singhal eventually submitted the report in court wherein he had mentioned “mistake of facts” in that case and given a clean chit to him.
Following that, Aditya Kumar rejoined duty as AIG in the police headquarters here.
After the clean chit to Aditya Kumar, the case file reached the Chief Minister’s Secretariat but officials found something fishy in it and transferred it to EOU for the thorough investigation.
The EOU officials used cyber cell officials to scan the phone numbers which were used to call senior police officials who have prepared the report including the DGP.
During the investigation, two numbers – 9709303397 and 9431602303, both having a photo of Chief Justice Karol as the display picture – were found to be used by Agrawal to call the DGP, and several times, the DGP had called him on this number. Sometimes, Agrawal sent messages to him and said that he was busy. The DGP also made an appointment on Whatsapp to talk to him over phone.
During investigation, it was also found that Aditya Kumar met Agrawal in a Patna restaurant to prepare the plan for the latter to pretend to be the Chief Justice.
The EOU, in its investigation, found that the phone numbers used to call the DGP did not belong to Chief Justice, put them under surveillance, and then managed to nab Agrawal.
During interrogation, Agrawal confessed that he was having close links with Aditya Kumar for the last four years, and they had connived to get the police officer a clean chit.