Cal HC allows CBI to take custody of accused in cross-border cattle smuggling case

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(Eds: With more inputs) Kolkata, Dec 18 (PTI) The Calcutta High Court on Friday allowed the CBI to take custody of Enamul Haque, accused in a case of cross-border cattle smuggling in which a senior officer of the BSF has been arrested.

Setting aside an order of judicial remand of Haque by a special CBI court in Asansol, Justice Tirthankar Ghosh granted the prayer of the investigating agency to take him in custody.

Justice Ghosh directed the CBI to take the accused in police custody on December 19 and produce him before the lower court on December 24.

He granted liberty to it to advance subsequent prayers for requirement of police custody or judicial remand before the special court, Asansol on December 24.

Satish Kumar, an officer of the Border Security Force (BSF), was arrested in connection with the case of cattle smuggling by the CBI on November 17.

Appearing for the CBI, Additional Solicitor General YJ Dastoor submitted that the requirement of police custody is for the purpose of investigation of the case, more particularly to ascertain the modus operandi in cattle smuggling and to identify the facilitators of the alleged offence.

Haque was arrested on November 7 in New Delhi and a court there granted interim bail and directed him to appear before the investigating officer on November 9.

He appeared on the said date and informed that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

On being approached by the CBI, another single bench of the high court had directed Haque to appear before the special court at Asansol within seven days of testing negative for coronavirus.

Haque appeared before the special court on December 11, which sent him to judicial custody for 14 days, refusing the CBI prayer for police remand.

The CBI then moved the high court challenging the special court's order. PTI AMR RBT RBT