The Supreme Court has listed a 14-year-old criminal case filed against West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s election agent S.K. Supian for hearing on April 9.
The bench of Justice N.V. Ramana, Justice Surya Kant and Justice Aniruddha Bose heard the matter on Tuesday and on the request of the petitioner adjourned the matter for today.
This petition is against a common order dated March 5, 2021 passed by a Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court, in two writ petitions filed as PIL being WPA(P) (Nilanjan Adhikary v. The State of West Bengal and Others) and WPA(P) (Dipak Mishra v. The State of West Bengal and Others). The HC had stayed an Additional CMM order of February 10, 2020 discharging the petitioner from Criminal Case No. 368 of 2007 and other similar orders passed on diverse dates, discharging various persons accused from criminal cases against them. The Calcutta High Court asked Courts concerned to take note of the stay orders and to deal with criminal cases accordingly.
Supian had then approached the Supreme Court for relief, stating that the FIRs hindered his ability to carry out his work as an election agent – the person legally responsible for a candidate’s campaign. He further said the PIL was “politically motivated” and were passed without due process.
On the last date of hearing, the Supreme Court ordered an ad-interim stay on the Calcutta High Court order to re-instate criminal cases against Supian. The FIRs in which Supian was named in relation to the Nandigram violence were withdrawn by the West Bengal government in 2020.
The petitioner has made the contention that since the order was passed without hearing the petitioner and it affects the petitioner, the petitioner should have been heard, more so since the order of discharge of the petitioner in the writ petition had been passed over a year before the writ petition was filed.