The Supreme Court raised so many questions on the CBI’s plea in the apex court against the order of house arrest of TMC leaders that it got entangled in them and it was ultimately good to withdraw the petition. However, the CBI had also received advice from the court to withdraw the petition. The CBI was shaken badly by the court’s question that it has arrested the accused against whom the charge sheet has been filed, but against whom the charge sheet has not been filed, they are out. The court’s reference was recently to TMC leaders joining the BJP. The court said that according to us, these accused are in a stronger position to influence the witnesses.
CBI under surveillance despite accused detention
A bench of Justices Vineet Sharan and BR Gavai said that the accused are under CBI supervision despite detention. The bench asked what exactly is the complaint of the CBI. We want to know what you want from us. Justice Gavai said in the context of the Calcutta High Court meeting on 17 May that we have seen that special benches have been entrusted to deal with freedom. But, this is the first time a special bench has been entrusted with the matter to withdraw personal liberty. The bench also clarified that it was not supporting the Chief Minister or Law Minister of the state and was only talking on the issue of personal liberty. It is better that you withdraw the petition. Because when we listen to the defendants (including the state government), we do not even know what they will say.
The matter is not only about the issue of bail
The Solicitor General said that the matter was not merely about the issue of bail. This includes major issues related to the rule of law. SG said that this happens in this state. The Chief Minister enters the police station to help the accused. The Law Minister sits in front of the CBI Judge. The Solicitor General stated that if these facts do not shake the discretion of the Bench, they have nothing to say further. The top law officer of the central government requested that the matter be adjourned till Friday. However, the bench said that the case is being heard today only on your request for early hearing. You only mentioned for this.
Justice Vineet Saran said that I am a judge for 18 years. Generally, if one of the judges of the bench has a different view on the issue of bail, bail is granted till the decision of the larger bench. Justice Gavai also asked the CBI why the High Court should be denied the opportunity to hear the case. After all, the bench of five judges is hearing. The bench reminded the Solicitor General that as far as the protection of constitutional rights is concerned, the High Court and the Supreme Court are on the same footing.
The issue of unprecedented acts of hooliganism
SG replied that I only want to answer legally. SG then reiterated that the issue is not just about bail but of unprecedented acts of hooliganism at the behest of state ministers. Justice Gavai said, “We do not want to mix the issue of civil liberties with illegal acts of politicians, we have to see whether bail can be granted or not.” There are other measures in relation to other issues. Nobody has stopped you from that. The independence of a person is first seen. Others are seen in relevant proceedings.
The bench suggested that the CBI withdraw the case from the Supreme Court and take up the issues before a five-judge bench of the Calcutta High Court. The Solicitor General then asked for a few minutes to take instructions. When the case was taken up again, the Solicitor General sought permission to withdraw the petition. The bench allowed the CBI to withdraw the petition with the liberty to raise the issues before the Calcutta High Court.