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Sen gets bail, but to remain behind bars

Sudipta Sen

Calcutta, July 1: Saradha boss Sudipta Sen was today granted bail for the first time since his arrest 71 days ago as the prime accused in the default crisis, but will remain in police custody as various cases involving him are being heard in different parts of the state.

An officer of the government-appointed special investigating team that is probing the crisis said Sen could not be released as there were several cases pending against him in connection with complaints lodged at police stations in Bengal and other states.

Although Sen was arrested by Bidhannagar police, he has been in the custody of Calcutta, Baruipur and Balurghat police in connection with separate complaints of cheating. The bail he got today was in connection with a case in Baruipur.

At present, both Sen and his aide Debjani Mikherjee are in the custody of Balurghat police.

“He has got bail, but that doesn’t mean he can walk free as there are several other cases pending against him in many police stations,” said an officer of the special investigating team.

According to him, similar cases were pending with the police in Asansol, Durgapur and Howrah, who might seek his custody during their investigations.

Senior lawyers said it could be the “beginning” of “good news” for Sen.

“There is no question of holding a person back if the investigation is over. He might get bail in other cases as well if the investigating agencies think they have extracted all the information they needed,” a senior lawyer said.

Sources said once the police in Bengal were done with their probe, the sleuths from Maharashtra and Assam could seek his custody.

Complaints of cheating and breach of trust have been lodged against the Saradha boss with the police in the two states.

Today, additional chief judicial magistrate Debdeep Manna granted bail to Sen and his associate Arvind Singh Chauhan as the Baruipur police have submitted a chargesheet, saying they had wrapped up their probe. Debjani got bail in the same case last week.