The West Bengal government on Thursday claimed that no CBI probe was required into the Narada tapes as Mathew Samuel, who conducted the alleged sting operation, could not establish any demand for bribe from any Trinamool Congress leader purportedly appearing in the videos.
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Advocate General Jayanta Mitra argued before a division bench comprising acting Chief Justice Nishita Mhatre and Justice T Chakraborty that there had to be a demand for bribe and then acceptance of the same as stated in the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Mitra submitted that if the ingredients of Prevention of Corruption Act are not satisfied, then one cannot conclude that an offence is committed. The acting Chief Justice asked the AG that if it was found in the tapes that some money had been given, could the court shut its eyes?
The AG, who told the court that he was appearing for the state on the ground of maintainability of the three PILs demanding a CBI probe into the Narada tapes, submitted that before an inquiry can be directed to be instituted, the court has to satisfy itself as to whether any cognisable offence has been committed.
The sting tapes, which were released by Narada Media Pvt Ltd before the West Bengal Assembly elections last year, purportedly show 11 TMC leaders, including ministers and MPs, accepting money. The matter was adjourned for the day and would be heard again on Friday.