‘Haven’t Understood How Custodial Detention Is Necessary’: Justice Arijit Banerjee ‘s Reasons For Granting Interim Bail To TMC Leaders In Narada Case

first_imgTop Stories’Haven’t Understood How Custodial Detention Is Necessary’: Justice Arijit Banerjee ‘s Reasons For Granting Interim Bail To TMC Leaders In Narada Case LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK21 May 2021 8:15 AMShare This – xThe Calcutta High Court division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Arijit Banerjee has delivered a split verdict on the pleas for interim bail of four Trinamool Congress leaders arrested by the CBI in the Narada scam case.While Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal refused interim bail, Justice Banerjee held that interim bail should be granted. In view of the conflicting views of the judges, the matter has been referred to a 5-judge bench. Both the judges however reached a consensus that the accused should be kept in house arrest till the matter if finally resolved.They have authored separate orders stating reasons for their conclusions.The case relates to the bail granted to Ministers Firhad Hakim and Subrata Mukherjee, MLA Madan Mitra and Sovan Chatterjee, who were arrested by the CBI from their Kolkata residences on May 17. Justice Arijit Banerjee has listed the following reasons for holding that they are entitled to interim bail :Case is of 2014; FIR is of 2017. Investigation is complete and chargesheet has been filed. So no further scope of tampering with evidence.It is not disputed that the applicants have so far cooperated with the investigation.Applicants are permanent residents of Kolkata. Two of them are cabinet ministers. One is an MLA. They are not ‘flight risks’ and there is little chance of they absconding.Accused persons are of advanced age. They are of the age 62 years old, 75 years old, 80 years old, and 75 years old.Supreme Court has passed a special order taking note of the COVID situation stating that bail should be granted liberally unless custodial detention is absolutely necessary.As regards the argument of Solicitor General of India Mr.Tushar Mehta, for the CBI, that there are chances of the accused tampering with the evidence and intimidating the prosecution witnesses using their high position and influence, Justice Banerjee stated :”This argument does not appeal to me. The case is of 2014. The FIR is of 2017. If the applicants indeed had to tamper with evidence, they would have done it by now”.Justice Banerjee noted that the investigation against the applicants is admittedly over. Therefore, he wondered if their custodial detention was required any more.”Admittedly, investigation against the present applicants is complete and charge-sheet has been submitted against them. This is stated unequivocally in paragraphs 9 and 10 of the remand application filed by CBI before the learned Court below. It is also stated that further investigation against the other accused persons is continuing. If that be so, I have not understood as to how custodial detention of the applicants is necessary any more, or how further investigation against the other accused persons will be hampered if the applicants are not detained in custody”, Justice Banerjee observed in the order.He opined that the applicants have made out a prima facie case for grant of interim-bail. On the other hand, Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal opined that it was premature to consider interim-bail.Justice Bindal referred to the “unprecedented situation” in the case, arising out of the mass protests led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Law Minister Moloy Ghatak in Kolkata, while the trial court was considering the bail applications.”Legal issues cannot be allowed to be raised and settled in streets,as these are not decided by show of strength but on merits of the controversy in accordance with law,for whic hrobust judicial system is available”, the Acting Chief Justice noted in the order.”Extra-ordinary situations need extra-ordinary solutions”, Justice Bindal stated.Today, the division bench passed a unanimous order allowing the accused to access files through online mode and to meet officials virtually, during their period of house arrest. This arrangement was made considering the fact that there are ministers and MLAs among the accused.The matter will be heard by a 5-judge bench on May 24.’Legal Issues Can’t Be Raised And Settled In Streets’ : Acting CJ Rajesh Bindal Of Calcutta HC Refuses Interim Bail To TMC Leaders In Narada Scam Case On May 17, the High Court had stayed the bail granted by the Special CBI Court at Kokata to four Trinamool Congress leaders – Firhad Hakim, Madan Mitra, Subrata Mukherjee and Sovan Chatterjee – who were arrested dramatically by CBI on May 17.The bench passed the stay order after a dramatic late night hearing held on the basis of a letter sent by the CBI seeking transfer of the case to the High Court citing “unprecedented mob pressure” exerted on the lower court by the mass protests led by Chief Minister and the Law Minister against the arrests of the TMC leaders.On the next day, the TMC leaders filed applications seeking recall of the stay order on the ground that it was passed without issuing notice to them.Case : CBI ACB Kolkata vs Shri Firhad Hakim @ Bobby Hakim and othersClick here to read/download the orderTags#Justice Arijit Banerjee Calcutta High Court #Narada Scam #Trinamool Congress Next Storylast_img read more