WB minister gets bail in Saradha case after 10 months

WB minister gets bail in Saradha case after 10 months

Ten months after being sent to jail for his involvement in Saradha scam, West Bengal’s transport minister Madan Mitra secured bail from a city court on Saturday.

Arrested on December 12 by the CBI on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating, misappropriation of funds and for deriving undue financial benefits from the tainted chit fund group, Mitra was given bail on Rs 2 lakh personal bond and Rs 1 lakh local security.

His passport has been withheld, and he was asked to cooperate with the probe on the scam estimated to be in the range of Rs 2,500 crore.

Moving the bail plea, Mitra’s lawyer contested the CBI’s request for continuation of his jail term on claims that he would influence the course of the probe. Mitra’s lawyer also argued that the CBI failed to provide evidence of the minister’s involvement in the scam.

Mitra spent a majority of his 324 days in judicial custody at a state-run hospital reportedly for multiple ailments.

CBI’s council told the court that it will not be able to take part in the hearing since it is unable to bring the case diary in the absence of the investigating officer who was out of station.

Probe

The judge said probes in economic crimes are on the basis of documents and contended that Mitra’s release on bail will not impact the probe. He granted bail since the agency’s council failed to give a convincing reason for extending the minister’s custody.

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