SC dismisses ED plea challenging Calcutta HC guidelines on raids, searches in Bengal scams probe

Insight Online News

New Delhi, March 7 : The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed the plea filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) challenging the guidelines set out by the Calcutta High Court in connection with the dissemination of information regarding the raids and search operations conducted by the probe agency in the alleged scams in West Bengal. At the very outset, a Bench headed by Justice Hrishikesh Roy told Additional Solicitor General (ASG) SV Raju, representing the ED, that it would not pass any interim order staying the guidelines issued by the High Court. “Mr Raju, if you want to withdraw the plea, you withdraw it. Otherwise, we will dismiss it,” added the Bench, also comprising Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra. Sensing the disclination of the apex court to entertain the petition, ASG Raju chose to withdraw it. “Accordingly, without entering into the merits of the impugned order, the SLP stands dismisses as not pressed,” ordered the apex court. Before the Calcutta High Court, Rujira Narula Banerjee, wife of Trinamool Congress national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee, had contended that the ED officials leak information relating to the investigation to assassinate her character and malign her family. In its order, a bench of Justice Sabyasachi Bhattacharya of the Calcutta High Court said: “The investigating agencies in general and the ED in particular should not involve or be accompanied by media persons during their raids/interrogations/search and seizure procedure, since such act on the part of the investigating agency compromises fair trial as well as privacy of the concerned individual, raising presumptions of guilt/involvement before being established in due process of law before the competent court.” The High Court had also asked the media to not publish the photographs of the accused before the final charge sheet in the matter is filed.

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