In a big relief for Leader of Opposition (LoP) in West Bengal Suvendu Adhikari, a single bench of the Calcutta High Court on Monday directed that “no coercive action” can be taken against him in connection with two police cases filed against him. The HC also stayed three other cases lodged by the West Bengal Police, including the one pertaining to the death of his bodyguard in 2018.
Reached for comment, Adhikari’s lawyer, Billwadal Bhattacharyya, said, “As per the order, Calcutta High Court put a stay on three cases. In other two cases, the court has directed ‘no coercive action’ against him. The court also said that he cannot be arrested. However, the investigation can continue and the investigating officer shall accommodate him as per his convenience.”
While hearing the matter, based on Adhikari’s plea before the court, Justice Rajasekhar Mantha questioned the advocate, who appeared on behalf of the CID that suddenly what evidence cropped up that forced the CID to reopen the case. “What happened suddenly that she (wife) suspected foul play? What evidence the investigating agency got suddenly that they reopened the case? The police must clear all these queries before the court and till then, no coercive action can be taken against him (Adhikari),” the high court observed.
On October 13, 2018, Adhikari’s bodyguard Subhabrata Chakraborty allegedly shot himself dead with his service revolver inside the barracks, which is located beside Adhikari’s house at Contai in West Midnapore district.
On July 9, his wife Suparna Kanjilal Chakraborty filed a fresh police complaint sensing foul play behind her husband’s death. She raised suspicion over police claims in 2018 and, therefore, the case was reopened.
Reacting to the HC order, BJP spokesperson Shamik Bhattacharya said, “We welcome the court’s order and this proves that the ruling TMC has indulged in vindictive politics.” Meanwhile, Tapas Roy, the deputy chief whip of TMC in the state assembly, refused to make any comment in this matter.
Meanwhile, the CID has decided to challenge the single-bench order before the division bench. Earlier on Monday, Adhikari officially informed the CID through e-mail that he will not be able to appear before them in connection with the death of his bodyguard. He has cited a couple of reasons for his absence, which includes his prior political engagements (in Bankura) and he also said the matter as sub-judice.
On September 7, the CID had summoned Adhikari’s personal driver Sambhu Maity and his close aid Sanjeev Shukla, in the same case.
Read all the Latest News, Breaking News and Coronavirus News here