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After announcing its decision to expand the scope of its investigation into coal block allocations by bringing under its scanner allocations made since 1993, the CBI has decided to cast its net all the way back to 1757. The Bureau will now investigate the dubious transactions between Mir Jafar and Robert Clive in the run up to the Battle of Plassey.
“The chain of corruption doesn’t end with 1993 but extends back to 1757 when the East India Company wrested political control of Bengal from Siraj ud-Daulah. We have prima facie evidence that favours were done to the East India Company under political pressure, and that the Company went on to gain windfall profits from the Raniganj Coalfields in West Bengal. We will study what systems were put in place for selection of companies, and whether these guidelines were followed,” said a spokesperson for the CBI.
The CBI has served a legal notice to Robert Clive’s lone surviving descendent, Timothy Clive, who now runs a tattoo parlour in a London suburb. When The Unreal Times reached Timothy for a quote, the surprisingly well-informed tattoo artist said, “I was expecting the CBI to knock at my doors eventually.I have no problems with it. My great great great grandfather and I have nothing to hide.”
However, the CBI may face insurmountable barriers when it comes to the interrogation of Mir Jafar’s descendant, Wasim Jafar. The Jafar scion has been traced to Pakistan’s bustling metropolis, Karachi, and the Home Ministry has added his name to the ‘most wanted’ list, which is periodically forwarded to Pakistani authorities.
The CBI’s comprehensive approach in investigating the coal scam has Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal’s imprimatur. “What triggered demand for coal? Britain’s Industrial Revolution in the late 18th century. What catalyzed that country’s industrial transformation? Colonization starting with Bengal’s conquest. And what aided Britain’s conquest of Bengal? Mir Jaffar’s corruption, of course. My point is these are complex issues and if you want to investigate the UPA’s alleged malfeasance, then you have to go back to the mother of all acts of corruption, i.e. Mir Jaffer’s treachery,” cogently reasoned Shri Sibal.