CBI court grants bail to four TMC leaders arrested in Narada case; party holds protests across state

The CBI on Monday morning arrested state ministers Firhad Hakim, Subrata Mukherjee, TMC MLA Madan Mitra and former party leader Sovan Chatterjee

Press Trust of India May 17, 2021 23:29:53 IST
CBI court grants bail to four TMC leaders arrested in Narada case; party holds protests across state

Representational image. AFP

Kolkata: Irate TMC activists, who held frenzied demonstrations outside the CBI office and Raj Bhavan in Kolkata in protest against the arrest of party leaders, broke into jubilation after a local court granted them interim bail in the Narada sting tapes case.

The CBI on Monday morning apprehended state ministers Firhad Hakim, Subrata Mukherjee, TMC MLA Madan Mitra and former party leader Sovan Chatterjee in connection with its probe into the sting operation, in which politicians were purportedly caught accepting bribes on camera.

A special CBI court, however, granted them interim bail later in the day.

A group of TMC workers in Chetla area, where Hakim resides, said they felt relieved after the court gave its ruling, and the verdict has further vindicated their faith in the judiciary.

As slogans such as 'TMC Zindabad', 'Bobby Hakim (Firhad) Zindabad', 'Subrata Mukherjee Zindabad' rent the air, the activists hugged each other before the central probe agency's Nizam Palace office.

"Bobbyda is our God. He and Didi are the only ones who can help us tide over the COVID-19 crisis. Amit Shah and Modi can only conspire against us, they will not save us," one of the TMC supporters said.

Similar scenes were witnessed close to Raj Bhavan, where the agitators, during the day, had shouted slogans against Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar, condemning him for sanctioning the prosecution of the four leaders in the Narada sting tapes case.

Some of them had come from as far as Kamarhati, a constituency Mitra represents.

"Madan da is working round the clock to provide COVID-19 care in Kamarhati. The BJP, which couldn't digest its resounding defeat in the just-concluded assembly elections, has influenced the CBI," another supporter of the ruling party, claimed.

Hundreds of TMC activists took out protest rallies in the city and elsewhere earlier in the day, thumbing their noses at lockdown regulations, after the CBI made the arrests. Some of them hurled stones at the security personnel posted outside the agency office.

In several areas, including Arambagh in Hooghly district and Kamarhati in North 24 Parganas, the protesters burnt tyres and blocked roads, demanding immediate release of party leaders.

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