Kolkata, Nov 24 IANS | 9 months ago

Arrested in connection with the Saradha Group chit-fund scam, suspended Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh Sunday was remanded in police custody for five days by a West Bengal court.


Rejecting his bail plea, the court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (Bidhannagar) A.K Ghosh, ordered him to be sent to five days' police custody, counsel said.

Ghosh, the CEO of Saradha's media arm, was arrested Saturday night and has been charged under sections 420 (cheating), 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 120B (conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) following a case filed by a general manager of Broadcast Worldwide - which was a part of the Saradha media empire.

"We contended that he has been quizzed 13 times by police, moreover his name doesn't feature in the FIR, so there was no justification to keep him in custody. But the court rejected our plea," Ghosh's counsel Sudipto Moitra said.

With police seizing a computer from Ghosh's house after conducting a search operation, the prosecution contended something incriminating may be found from the device and Ghosh's custody was essential for investigation.

Pressing for Ghosh's bail, his counsel argued that the Rajya Sabha member was arrested because he had named some people during interrogation and also filed an FIR Saturday against Bidhannagar Commissionerate Deputy Commissioner (Detective Department) Arnab Ghosh, accusing him of blackmailing and threatening him.

Hearing the arguments of both the parties, the court remanded him in police custody, fixing Nov 29 for his next appearance.

Ghosh, who was suspended by the Trinamool for anti-party activities, was arrested a day after he dragged party supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee into the scam, alleging that Saradha's media arm was set up with "the motto to promote Banerjee as the country's next prime minister".

Police after his arrest said they have enough evidence to indicate that "Ghosh played an equal part with Sudipta Sen (Saradha promoter and scam kingpin) in most of his misdeeds".

The scandal came to light in April when the company closed shop across Bengal, unable to pay back the depositors, mainly poor people in small towns and villages, who had parked their life's savings with the group, lured by the promise of huge returns.

Sen and several of his key aides are now behind bars.

(Posted on 24-11-2013)