Bhubaneswar, May 19
Trinamool Congress MP Sudip Bandopadhyay was granted conditional bail on Friday by the Orissa High Court after he spent four and a half months in custody in connection to the Rose Valley chit fund scam.
The bench of Justice J.P. Das granted bail to Bandopadhyay on health grounds but on condition that he surrenders his passport and deposits a bond of Rs 25 lakh.
The court had reserved the order on his bail plea after hearing arguments of both the prosecution and defence on May 8.
Bandopadhyay’s counsel had pleaded in court that the MP was not involved in the scam and should be granted bail as he is seriously ill.
However, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which had arrested the TMC leader from Kolkata on January 3, vehemently opposed the bail plea.
Bandyopadhyay had moved the High Court in February, seeking bail after his applications were rejected by the designated CBI Court in Bhubaneswar and the Khurda district sessions court.
Bandyopadhyay, a four-time Lok Sabha member and Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare in former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s cabinet between 2011 and 2012, was under arrest since January 3, when he was taken into custody by the CBI for his alleged links with the Rose Valley scam.
The CBI has also arrested another TMC MP, Tapas Pal, for his alleged involvement in the scam.
The agency has already filed a chargesheet in a special court here against the two TMC leaders.
In the chargesheet, the CBI indicted Bandopadhyay, Pal and a Rose Valley subsidiary under Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating) of the IPC, Sections 4 and 6 of the Prize Chits and Money Circulation Schemes (Banning) Act, and Section 13(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, (abusing position as a public servant).
The agency had accused Rose Valley chairman Gautam Kundu and others of defrauding investors from across the country of more than Rs 17,000 crore.