The jail diary of Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh, being serialised in Bengali daily Swabhumi since May 8, has left jail authorities bothered. Ghosh has been in jail since November 29 in connection with the Saradha scam.
Advertisements had announced the series before it started. Arunabha Ghosh, the lawyer representing the newspaper, said the Bidhannagar police had summoned editor Ankit Jaiswal. “They asked him about the series and his relations with Ghosh,” he said. Commissioner of police Rajeev Kumar did not respond to the allegation when The Indian Express contacted him.
In the series, Kunal Ghosh writes about his experience in jails and court lockups and the people he meets, though he has not referred to the scam directly.
“If his write-ups mention anything against the state, the police will have to look into it. He is a division 2 prisoner and can write only one letter per month. We don’t know how his write-ups are coming out,” a jail department official said. “Last month the government directed a probe after Ghosh managed to send a letter to the Enforcement Directorate, bypassing jail officials. The rule is that letters written by a prisoner are to be routed through the jail superintendent.”
According to Arunabha Ghosh, publishing the series is not illegal. “Ghosh is an undertrial, not a convict, so there is no law preventing a newspaper from publishing it. The Supreme Court has given this verdict in a similar case in Tamil Nadu,” he said.
From the diaries
“There are different kinds of inmates… some ruthless, some generous, some have created terror, if you do not satisfy him they will finish you. But sometimes they help other inmates. For example, some poor offender cannot go out of jail because he does not have the money to tide over legal hassles. It will be the dada who pays the money to the lawyer. It is the dada who arranges for special treats. At one court lockup I have seen a dada, accused in five murders, arranging for a sumptuous lunch for other accused whom he did not know from before. They are so large-hearted…
“Some undertrials are ferocious. Their language, gestures and postures are so spine-chilling…
“I came across a boy. He was in a racket of car thefts. He explained how cars are lifted, dismantled, smuggled out to other states, even countries. I was overwhelmed. Jail is a great teacher.”
(June 4, Swabhumi)