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SCERT Scam: Journalists, RTI Workers Summoned to CM Vigilance Office

Several journalists are charged with blackmailing SCERT Scam accused Sewali Devi Sharma.

SCERT Scam: Journalists, RTI Workers Summoned to CM Vigilance Office

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  30 May 2023 9:14 AM GMT

GUWAHATI: According to reports on Tuesday, the Chief Minister's Special Vigilance cell has summoned several journalists and Right to Information (RTI) workers on the charges of blackmailing Sewali Devi Sharma and is questioning them in response to the allegations made by Sewali Devi Sharma, the primary suspect in the 105 billion State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) scam.

The CM vigilance cell was questioning a journalist named Puja Das as part of their ongoing inquiry when they discovered that several lakhs of rupees had been deposited in her mother's bank account, according to sources.

The cell was also questioning Maina Saikia, also known as Anup Saikia, a close friend of Rabijit Gogoi.

The evidence of Gogoi's demand for Sewali's money was found on his mobile phone after he was previously summoned to the vigilance cell headquarters. A news agency identity card and two mobile phones that were in his hands were afterward taken by the cell.

Sources claim that several journalists and RTI personnel would likely be detained on suspicion of blackmail.

It has come to light that Lakhi Narayan Sonowal, a former deputy director, is suspected of having overseen the accused journalists and RTI staff.

Previously, during questioning, Sewali Sharma claimed that multiple Right to Information (RTI) employees and journalists had blackmailed her.

Sharma said that the individuals she named—employees and journalists—had blackmailed and extorted more than Rs 2 crores from her.

It should be noted that Sharma and nine other individuals were remanded in detention on May 20. Sewali Devi Sharma and Ajit Paul Singh were detained by the Chief Minister's Special Vigilance Cell (CM's SVC) on May 8 in the early morning hours at the Cross Lane Hotel in Ajmer, Rajasthan. Following the discovery of the case involving the misappropriation of 105 crore rupees in funds, both defendants were on the run.

Sewali Devi, Ajit Paul Singh, Rahul Amin, and a housekeeper from the hotel were all captured by the CM's SVC investigators in addition to them. After presenting them before a Rajasthani court, they were all sent to Assam on remand.

Sewali Devi Sharma's younger daughter was detained later that day in connection with the SCERT scandal, which has been linked to 105 crores in losses. Bejeta Sharma, the arrested individual, was named. The transfer of a sizable sum of money to her bank account, according to a report, occurred.

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