Probe ordered by Mamata has no bearing on PILs: Kolkata High Court

One of the counsel in the PILs Claimed the probe ordered by Mamata is tantamount to interference with the judicial process
Kolkata High Court

The probe ordered by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee into the Naradanews sting controversy will not have any bearing on the multiple public interest litigations (PIL) pending before it on the matter, said the Calcutta High Court on Monday.

Claiming the probe ordered by Mamata is tantamount to interference with the judicial process, Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya, one of the counsel in the PILs, drew it to the attention of the division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur which is hearing the petitions.

“The probe is an interference with the judicial process as well as contempt of court so I drew the court’s attention to it. The Chief Justice said the matter is sub-judice and what one is saying about it outside is immaterial. The court alone will decide the matter,” said Bhattacharya.

The court also directed the government pleader to furnish details of the probe by 24 June.

Carried out by a portal – Naradanews – the sting caught on camera over a dozen Trinamool Congress leaders including former union ministers, state cabinet heavyweights and MPs accepting money as “bribes” in return for allegedly doling out favours to a fictitious company.

Following Banerjee’s 17 June direction of the probe, the city police initiated case under several offences including defamation against Naradanews CEO Mathew Samuel.

The court on 29 April had ordered forensic examinations of the tapes as well as recording devices by the Central Forensic Science Laboratory Hyderabad. The report is awaited.