A five-judge Bench of the Calcutta High Court on May 27 said it would first take up the petition by the four arrested TMC leaders for recall of its earlier order staying bail to them by a lower court. Only after that, it would take up the CBI’s plea that the case be transferred to the High Court, the Bench said.
After conferring with each other, the bench led by Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal said, “We will hear the recall applications tomorrow morning.”
According to CBI, the Special CBI Court had come under pressure to grant the four leaders interim bail, and said, “If this mobocracy is not checked by the constitutional court, tomorrow we may have a situation where a gangster is arrested and his henchmen gherao the CBI office.”
The four leaders are currently under house arrest following an order by a Division Bench of the High Court, that had stayed the bail.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Central Bureau of Investigations, made most of the submissions on May 27 itself.
Mehta appealed that the proceedings before the Special CBI Court be nullified.
“Apart from seeking transfer (of the case to the High Court), I am also invoking jurisdiction under 482 CrPC, 226 and 227 of the Constitution seeking a declaration that entire proceedings of May 17 post-production of accused are vitiated and non-est”, Mehta said.
“In this state, similar instances are happening frequently… Today we are seeing political leaders indulging in methodical and orchestrated attempts. If this mobocracy is not checked by the constitutional court, tomorrow we may have a situation where a gangster is arrested and his henchmen gherao the CBI office… None of my arguments may be treated as attributing anything to the learned judge who granted the bail. The fundamental principle is whatever order passed by a civil or a criminal court must inspire confidence. Public confidence in the system is important”, he added.
The Solicitor General said, “If the court does not check this… it may spread to other states, and this may not (remain confined) to politicians and may spread to gangsters.”
He urged that the facts of this case are peculiar and none of his arguments may be treated as attributing anything to the Judge who granted the bail.
Justice Mukerji, speaking for the Bench, told the SG that as a court of law, it can only check if the alleged mobocracy has influenced the Judge who passed the order.