The Calcutta High Court on Friday observed that the authenticity of the Narada footage could not be determined from the available report submitted by the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) in Hyderabad and hence issued an order to send the footage to CFSL Chandigarh for detailed forensic examinations.
The report of the examination carried out by the CFSL in Hyderabad was opened in the High Court on Friday but it observed that the footage was not clear. As per the observation of the court, the video footage relating to the Narada sting operation was unclear as they were shot in an I-phone and then transferred to a laptop. Hence the hard disk of the laptop needed to be tested to determine whether any malpractices occurred while transferring the file.
The High Court had sent the footage to CFSL Hyderabad for the examination after a PIL was filed
at the High Court against Narada Scam. The Hyderabad lab which was conducting forensic tests on the Narada footage announced on Friday that the footages are not clear yet and needs to be retested in detail.
The lab authorities also recommended the footage to be sent to CFSL Chandigarh for a detailed examination. The Hyderabad lab do not have proper infrastructure to examine all the footage as they were transferred from one device to another many a time.
In Friday’s order, the High Court said that all the footages and documents submitted by the owner of Narada news Mathew Samuel and a photocopy of Hyderabad lab’s report must be sent to CFSL in Chandigarh within 10 days for re-examination.
A 10-member committee formed by the Calcutta High Court has been asked to send the footages and documents relating to the investigation to the Chandigarh laboratory and the report must be sent to the three member committee within one month. The next hearing in this regard will be after six weeks.
When the report from the CFSL Hyderabad was opened before the High Court it said that it was mentioned in the report that Samuel recorded the footages on his I-phone and the footage was transferred to a laptop following which the entire recordings were taken into a pen drive.
Later the footage were taken into a CD which is why it was difficult for the Hyderabad lab to determine the authenticity of the footage. Meanwhile, the members of the Special Investigating Team (SIT) of the Kolkata Police on Friday raided a hotel in Kolkata in connection with the Narada scam.
According to police, Matthew Samuel had spent a long time at the hotel during his stay in Kolkata.
The investigating officers were looking whether he was alone or someone-else was there with him. They are also looking into if anybody had visited Samuel in the hotel during his stay in the city. The police also checked the CCTV footage and the visitors’ book along with all other important documents.
Police also raided the offices of the two travel agencies of the city where from Samuel had purchased the tickets to several states. They were trying to know the places where he had gone and who had accompanied him.
It may be mentioned that the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, a few days ago, had announced that the state government would probe on the Narada scam and the investigation would be conducted under the supervision of commissioner of Kolkata police Rajiv Kumar.
The anti-corruption department of the Kolkata Police had sent an email to Matthew Samuels asking him to report immediately to Lalbazaar in connection with Narada sting operation.