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Fresh arrest of Saket, this time by ED

On Wednesday, Gokhale was produced before an Ahmedabad court that remanded him in the central agency’s custody till January 31
Saket Gokhale
Saket Gokhale
File picture

Our Special Correspondent   |   Calcutta   |   Published 26.01.23, 04:51 AM

Trinamul national spokesperson Saket Gokhale, currently lodged in a Gujarat prison in a cheating case, was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday in connection with alleged misuse of money gathered through crowd-funding.

The journalist and RTI activist-turned-politician was taken into custody under sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, in Ahmedabad, where he is in judicial custody since January 5 over a case by Gujarat police.


The 34-year-old was arrested by the Ahmedabad police’s cyber crime branch from Delhi on December 30 last year in this case.

The charge of misusing crowd-funded money was levelled against Gokhale by an Ahmedabad resident in an FIR that claimed a donation of Rs 500 to the Trinamul leader.

Gujarat police have claimed Gokhale amassed over Rs 70 lakh from over 1,700 people through a platform for democracy, and made personal use of the money.

On Wednesday, Gokhale was produced before an Ahmedabad court that remanded him in the central agency’s custody till January 31.

The 34-year-old was arrested in December last year from Delhi by Gujarat police for alleged misuse of crowd-funding money. Gujarat High Court refused regular bail to him on Monday in the case, asking him to approach the court not before a chargesheet was filed. Gokhale moved Gujarat High Court after two lower courts in Ahmedabad denied him bail.

Prior to his arrest from Delhi’s Banga Bhavan, Gujarat police arrested him twice in December for allegedly spreading fake news regarding the monetary cost of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Morbi visit following the bridge collapse tragedy that killed 135 people.

His December 1 tweet carried a newspaper clipping that purportedly claimed Modi’svisit cost Rs 30 crore. The Press Information Bureau tweeted a “fact check”, claiming the information was false.

Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee has been vocal against Saket’s alleged victimisation by BJP-led governments.

Last week, she said: “Our social worker, a true activist who also contributes to our social media network, was arrested illegally from the Banga Bhavan premises by Gujarat police.”

“Before that, he was arrested from an airport in Rajasthan, while he was going to Ahmedabad. They re-arrested him immediately after the court gave him bail,” the Trinamul chief had added.

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