Cattle smuggling case: Calcutta HC bench rejects bail plea moved by Anubrata Mondal

4 January, 2023 | Vaishali Sharma

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The Calcutta High Court division bench denied bail to Trinamool Congress (TMC) Birbhum district president Anubrata Mondal, who is currently in CBI custody in connection with a livestock smuggling c...

The Calcutta High Court division bench denied bail to Trinamool Congress (TMC) Birbhum district president Anubrata Mondal, who is currently in CBI custody in connection with a livestock smuggling case in West Bengal.

Mondal filed the bail application through his attorney, stating that while he has been in the custody of the central inquiry agency for the last five months (145 days) in connection with the cattle smuggling case, the’main culprit,’ BSF officer Satish Kumar, was given release after a month. The division bench, which included Justices Joymalya Bagchi and Ajay Kumar Gupta, denied the bail application, adding that it was not inclined to do so at this stage of the probe.

The CBI, via its lawyer, had objected to Anubrata’s bail request, claiming that if he was released from the agency’s custody, he may influence witnesses in the case and disrupt the current probe.

It went on to say that Mondal was a key facilitator in cattle smuggling, using his political weight to enable free movement of smugglers in the districts of Birbhum and Murshidabad.

The central agency further claimed that the ‘organised crime’ could not have occurred without his support.

According to the CBI, his participation in the crime is significant and cannot be dismissed as small.
In his client’s defence, Mondal’s attorney stated that there was no proof to back up the CBI’s assertions.

Mondal is now being held in Asansol prison on suspicion of livestock smuggling.

Previously, on December 21, Mondal filed a petition in the Delhi High Court contesting the Rouse Avenue Court’s issue of a production warrant in the livestock smuggling case initiated by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

After hearing the ED’s counsel’s comments, a single bench of Justice Jasmeet Singh postponed the case for further hearing on January 9.