Santanu Bhaumik was killed on September 21, 2017 while covering an agitation while Sudip Dutta Bhaumik was killed on November 20, 2017 at the office of Tripura State Rifles (TSR) headquarters
India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) agreed to probe the murders of journalists Santanu Bhaumik and Sudip Dutta Bhaumik as announced by Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb in front of reporters on June 22.
Santanu Bhaumik was killed on September 21, 2017 while covering an agitation at Mandai, a place 25 km east of Agartala. Sudip Dutta Bhaumik was killed on November 20, 2017 at the office of Tripura State Rifles (TSR) headquarters.
The erstwhile CPI-(M) led Left Front government constituted separate special investigation teams (SITs), each of which probed the murder of the journalists.
The CBI has reportedly found the complicity of three IPFT leaders in connection with Santanu Bhaumik’s murder case. Abiding with the legal processes of investigation, the CBI lodged a first information report (FIR) with the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court in Agartala to set the investigation in motion.
Santanu’s father Sadhan Bhaumik, unsatisfied with SIT probe filed a writ petition with the Tripura High Court through renowned Advocate Samrat Kar Bhaumik and solicited a CBI investigation. The writ petition also mentions the name of three IPFT leaders.
Interestingly, IPFT is the coalition partner of the ruling BJP in Tripura.
The Tripura Protection of Journalists’ Forum, a platform of nine media organizations in the state has been demanding a CBI investigation into the murders for a long time. The forum led a candlelight agitation in front of the Rabindra Satabarshiki Bhavan for 171 days.
On March 10, 2018 the newly-formed BJP-IPFT government chaired its first cabinet meeting and thence, initiated the legal process for a CBI investigation into the murders.
Before assumption of power in Tripura on March 3, 2018, BJP promised to begin the CBI investigation into the murders of Santanu Bhaumik and Sudip Dutta Bhaumik as part of its poll plank.
Before the verdict was pronounced by the Tripura High Court, the CBI has begun its investigations upon the request of the government of Tripura.
CBI is the premier investigating agency of India.