Acting district and sessions judge Siddhartha Kanjilal of Alipore Judge Court on Friday rejected the bail plea of Madan Mitra, but asked the CBI counsel whether “heaven will fall” if bail is granted to him after he had been in custody for 441 days. “Will he be able to influence the witnesses?” the judge asked.

Mitra, former state transport minister,had been arrested on 12 December, 2014. Advocate Vaishonor Chatterjee, counsel of Madan Mitra submitted, “While Sudipto Sen and other accused in this matter have been granted bail, Mitra has been kept in jail custody. Till now, CBI has submitted seven to eight supplementary chargesheets. The last chargesheet was submitted on 4 January.”

Chatterjee further stated that CBI has nowhere in the chargesheet implicated Mitra as an accused and no allegation has also been stated. Chatterjee, in his submission, stated that though CBI counsel has been maintaining that Mitra has never been in jail custody and was in the hospital citing illness, but after Calcutta High Court rejected his last bail plea on 19 November 2015, Mitra has been in judicial custody for the last 100 days. Chatterjee submitted that Sandhir Agarwal was also granted bail on the same day, but CBI has not objected or moved for bail cancellation. CBI has always being saying that Mitra is accused of money laundering but they have not been able to prove till now that there has been any account to account transfer.

Mitra has been always saying to be “influential” by the CBI, but ministers like A Raja and Kanimozhi have also been granted bail, he further said. Chatterjee pleaded that how can Mitra be kept in custody when CBI has been in uncertainty all the time. So he pleaded to grant Mitra bail. He also pleaded, if required, Mitra will visit the CBI office everyday and co-operate in their investigation. CBI special public prosecutor K Raghavacharulu, vehemently opposed the bail stating Calcutta High Court had cancelled the bail.Raghavacharulu alleged that Mitra can influence the public and he had tampered with the judicial process. The lower court while granting him bail had not given any reason as to the change in circumstances. “This is a larger conspiracy and there is proof that Mitra had gone to public meeting where he has stated that ‘he is beside Sarada’,” he said.

Raghavacharulu further submitted that they are also conducting the investigation for RBI and SEBI, for which Mitra&’s custody is required.“Till now.there has been no change in the circumstances and further investigation is going on. If Mitra is granted bail, then public will lose faith in the judiciary,” he stated. Hearing both the counsel&’s, the ADJ observed, “It is true that public money is involved and Mitra was present in certain meetings of the Saradha group. How can Mitra&’s counsel convince that he will not influence the witnesses?”