The bail petitions of Trinamool leaders Madan Mitra and Kunal Ghosh, currently in jail in connection with the Saradha scam case, were rejected on Wednesday.
While Mitra’s bail prayer was rejected by Alipore district and sessions judge Samaresh Prasad Chowdhury, Ghosh’s plea was dismissed by metropolitan magistrate Barun Roy.
Mitra’s counsel Milon Mukherjee told the court that there was no direct evidence to prove his complicity in the scam. He also questioned the way CBI was investigating the case. However, the CBI counsel K Raghavcharyulu — who reached the city from Delhi on Wednesday — referred to Mitra as ‘Money Mitra’ and said he had “sold his face” and allured poor people to invest in the tainted company. He added that the minister was involved in ‘deep rooted conspiracy’. After hearing both the counsels, the court rejected Mitra’s bail plea.
Mitra’s lawyers had filed the bail petition on February 6 soon after Trinamool Congress MP Srinjoy Bose got bail from the same court as Section 409 (criminal breach of trust) of the IPC was not incorporated in the order of Alipore ACJM Haradhan Mukherjee. Bose’s 60-day jail term ended the day he got bail.
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The CBI filed a correctional petition before the lower court two days ago seeking incorporation of Section 409 in the judge’s order regarding Mitra. The court observed that the ground on which Bose was granted bail did not apply to Mitra as Section 409 was included in the case against him.
Meanwhile, Mitra was immediately taken to the SSKM Hospital after he complained of chest pain. Several tests were conducted on him.
Suspended Trinamool MP Kunal Ghosh, who also pleaded for bail on Wednesday, alleged that the probe into the scam was being subjected to “extraneous influence”. “The whole system is acting to influence the probe,” he said during the hearing of the case.
“My bail prayer is being opposed on the ground that I am an influential person while people of the ruling party are hampering court proceedings,” Ghosh said apparently making a reference to the disruption by a section of lawyers two days ago during the inclusion of Section 409 of the IPC as part of charges against Mitra. Seeking a probe into CBI’s alleged failure to get Section 409 of the IPC slapped against some accused, Ghosh said: “Just because of a simple clerical mistake, the important Section was not incorporated, is this acceptable?”
The judge, upon hearing both the parties, rejected the bail prayer and extended Ghosh’s remand till February 25. The judge also extended the judicial remand of Saradha boss Sudipta Sen and his close associate Debjani Mukherjee till February 25. In another development, the Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday examined an associate of Debjani Mukherjee.