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Arpita Mukherjee is a small-time actress infamous for getting arrested by Enforcement Directorate (ED) on 23 July 2022 along with TMC leader Partha Chatterjee in money laundering case pertaining to SSC scam case.
Arpita was born in a middle-class family. Her father was a Central Government employee who passed away many years back. After his death Arpita was offered a Job in his place but she decided to focus on her modelling and acting career.
Her mother Minati Mukherjee lives in Belgharia at her family home.
She also has an elder sister who is a Group-D school staff and is married to a cab driver named Kalyan Dhar.
Arpita did her schooling from Ramakrishna Sarada Mission Sister Nivedita Girl’s School in Kolkata and later graduated from Scottish Church College, Kolkata.
She began her career as a model in 2004 and also worked as a nail artist & had also opened three nail salons in Patuli, Lake View Road and Baranagar.
She was a small-time actress and mostly played side roles in a few Bengali, Odia and Tamil films between 2008 and 2014.
In 2019 and 2020, she was the brand ambassador of “Naktala Udayan Sangha”, famous for its themed Durga Pujo pandals across the city. Partha Chatterjee was the chief financer of the Naktala Udayan Sangha at that time.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) raided her flat on 23 July 2022 and seized cash worth more than ₹20 crore, gold jewellery worth ₹79 lakh, ₹54 lakh forex and 22 mobiles from her flat. The ED also alleged that she had been running at least 12 shell companies for financial manoeuvres. Following this, Arpita Mukherjee and TMC Minister Partha Chatterjee were arrested and sent to the custody of the ED till August 5 by a Kolkata court.
The said amount is suspected to be proceeds of kickbacks in the West Bengal School Service Commission (WBSSC) recruitment scam between 2014 and 2021 during Partha Chatterjee’s tenure as education minister of West Bengal.
After her arrest, a video went viral on social media in which West Bengal’s CM Mamata Banerjee was seen sharing the stage with Arpita and allegations were made about Mamata Banerjee’s involvement in the School Service Commission (SSC) scam. Mamata Banerjee dismissed the allegations made against her. She said, “I go for inauguration of many pujas. How am I supposed to know whom the organisers have invited? How could I know that she was Partha’s friend? I do not spare even my partymen if they are at fault. I do not and will not spare my own minister if found guilty.”
More raids were conducted by ED on 27 July 2022 and seized ₹27.9 crore in cash and gold worth ₹4.31 crore after a 19-hour long raid at one of the apartments belonging to Arpita Mukherjee. So far, the agency has recovered about ₹50 crore from her premises.
Amid her interrogation, her aunt Swapna Chakraborty alleged that Arpita had made underground bunkers in her home in Mathurabati Village in Jangipara, West Bengal to hide the money. She also claimed that many of her relatives got jobs because of Arpita and Partha.
Chatterjee who was the virtual number two in the TMC was removed from the ministry and was also suspended from the party following his arrest. Mamata Banerjee said, “Partha Da has been relieved of his ministerial responsibilities. For the time being, I will keep his ministries till a cabinet reshuffle takes place.”
According to a local resident, Arpita Mukherjee and Partha Chatterjee have been spotted together multiple times in a farmhouse named “APA”, which is said to be a abbreviation for Arpita & Partha.
ED also recovered 31 life insurance policies of Arpita Mukherjee’s which had Partha Chatterjee’s name as nominee.
Her brother-in-law Kalyan Dhar, who is a cab driver in real life and does not even own a motorcycle is listed as the co-director of three firms along with Arpita. The firms are Symbiosis Merchants Private Limited, Sentry Engineering Private Limited and Arpita Echhay Entertainment Private Limited. He lives in a small house near Kolkata and he and his family seem to have locked themselves up in their house scaring about the ED raids.
Kalyan Dhar’s childhood friend, Sanjay Poddar revealed that Dhar’s wife is Arpita’s sister. Poddar said, “Kalyan Dhar is a driver of a private car and he drives someone else’s car and his wife is a Group-D school staff. She got this a year or two ago. Arpita is his wife’s sister.”
According to media reports, Arpita was earlier married to a Jhargram based businessman but got separated from her husband.
She is a fitness enthusiast and often post her workout pictures on social media.