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CBI starts probe, conducts 3D scanning of crime scene

CBI starts probe, conducts 3D scanning of crime scene
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Kolkata: A team from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) reached Bogtui village at Rampurhat in Bengal's Birbhum district on Saturday and began its investigation into the violence that claimed eight lives on Monday night.

The CBI team along with members from the Central Forensic Science Laboratory examined the affected house where the charred bodies of seven persons were found.

"We have conducted 3D laser scanning of the spot for the purpose of accurate, feature-rich visualisation of the crime scene. The technology is used to depict the relational aspects of each piece of evidence which help us to rebuild and reconstruct the scenes," a CBI source said.

The CBI sleuths along with forensic experts were found collecting samples from the walls and the floors of the tragedy-struck house.

A white drum that may be used for storing any chemical was also collected from the site. Some instruments that are used for digging earth or for similar purposes were also recovered.

The Special Investigation Team (SIT) that has been probing the case before the matter was handed over to the CBI by Calcutta High Court has already arrested 22 persons in connection with the incident. "We are planning to seek custody of the arrested persons and interrogate them for further leads in the case. We will also question the injured persons who are undergoing treatment at Rampurhat hospital," a senior CBI official said.

The CBI's FIR has been initiated in similar sections in which the SIT began the probe and the case diary of the investigation has already been collected by the CBI sleuths.

The CBI team led by DIG CBI Akhilesh Kumar Singh will be camping at Panthasree Nivas, a guest house belonging to the state Public Health Engineering department situated at Rampurhat. All the six rooms have been booked by the central agency.

Unidentified people had on March 21 set 10 houses on fire in the village, killing at least eight persons, including women and children. Calcutta High Court on Friday directed the CBI to take over the investigation and submit a report by the next date of hearing, which was set for April 7.

The block administration on Saturday under the directions of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee distributed rice, baby food and biscuits among the 10 families who have been affected by the incident. Most of the families have returned to their homes while some others have taken shelter in residences of their relatives at Bataspur in Sainthia.

A team from the West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights led by its chairperson Ananya Chakraborty spoke with the affected families. "We will have to ensure that the rights of the children who have survived this heinous crime remain secured," Chakraborty said.

Anarul Hossain, who was arrested on Thursday, again alleged conspiracy while he was being taken to Rampurhat hospital for a medical check-up on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Trinamool Congress leader Firhad Hakim on being questioned about the CBI probe in the case said the central agency has done nothing new in the investigation. "They have taken over the probe from SIT and will be taking those into custody whom the SIT has already arrested. If the Delhi BJP leaders or Suvendu Adhikari issue directions to CBI to misuse its power against us, we will not accept things lying down," he added.

Kunal Ghosh, the party's state general-secretary, said the party will extend all cooperation to the CBI in its probe. "However, if they (CBI) do something in a politically motivated way, then we will reply politically," Ghosh added.

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