Kolkata meat scandal: Bribes as low as Rs 50 to municipal staff used to extract information on dead animals, say cops

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New Delhi | Published: May 2, 2018 11:23:01 AM

The racket was busted when two persons were arrested after locals in Budge Budge, 30 km from Kolkata, stopped a vehicle carrying dead animals from dump yard.

Kolkata meat scandal, Kolkata, dead animals, Kolkata municipal body, dead animal meat, frozen meat, Kolkata Police, animal dump yard, frozen meat wholesaler, Budge Budge, Rajabazar Police have seized tonnes of meat in raids in Kolkata. (Express Photo)

Intensifying their probe into the rotten meat carcass case, investigators said that they have found that municipal body staff colluded with racketeers who were involved in supplying meat of dead animals to restaurants in Kolkata. According to a report in The Indian Express, the civic body staff allegedly tipped the racketeers off about dead animals in the dump yard around the city. Once they had their hands on the meat, they cleaned it using chemicals like formalin and aluminium sulphate. It was later packaged and kept in cold storage before being supplied to the restaurants.

Citing investigating officials, a report in the Indian Express said that racketeers used to pay Rs 50 to Rs 100 to municipal staff for sharing information about dead animals being dumped in the yards. Quoting an investigator, it said that racketeers were supplying meat to restaurants and hotels ranging from Rs 100 to Rs 280 per kg and introduced themselves as wholesalers of frozen meat.

Police said that they have arrested the kingpin of the crime. Superintendent of Police Koreswar Rao said that they have also arrested one person from Nawada in Bihar. Rao who is spearheading the probe said that arrests were made in Kolkata and neighbouring districts. The official added that one person was also taken into custody in Nawada in Bihar.

Rao said that they are probing all possible angles in the case. He said that they are trying to ascertain the districts within the state as well as outside that the racketeers were supplying meat to and in what quantity. He said that samples have been sent to laboratories and results are awaited.

So far, 10 people have been arrested by police for their involvement in the case. The IE report said that among the arrested persons one is a former councillor identified as Manik Mukhopadhyay. The alleged mastermind of the crime was arrested from Bihar on April 25. His name is Sunny Mullick. Also, seven teams have been set up by the police and deployed at different locations within the state and outside to trace who all else are involved.

The racket was busted when two persons were arrested after locals in Budge Budge, 30 km from Kolkata, stopped a vehicle carrying dead animals from dump yard. They told investigators about the racket. Later, 1,000 packets of processed meat weighing 20 kg were seized from Rajabazar clod storage.

Meanwhile, Mayor-in-Council (Health) Atin Ghosh said that they are conducting surprise raids at restaurants an hotels to collect samples of meat. Also, Consumer Affairs Department has been asked to submit a report to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

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