SC Grants Protection From Arrest Till 28 May to WB BJP Candidate
The SC granted protection to Arjun Singh from arrest in cases registered against him by the West Bengal police.
A day before the counting for the Lok Sabha elections, the Supreme Court on Wednesday, 22 May, granted protection from arrest till 28 May to the BJP’s candidate from Barrackpore constituency in West Bengal, Arjun Singh.
A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and MR Shah granted protection to Singh from arrest in several cases registered against him by the West Bengal police.
No coercive action will be taken against the BJP candidate for seven days in the cases lodged against him by the police, the top court said, adding that its order granting protection will cease after 28 May. The order notes that Singh can seek bail before an appropriate forum.
Earlier on Wednesday, the apex court took note of violence during the Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal and agreed to hear Singh’s plea seeking protection from arrest.
A vacation bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra and MR Shah had taken note of the submissions of Arjun Singh that he be granted protection from arrest as he wanted to be present during counting of votes for Lok Sabha elections on Thursday at Barrackpore.
“Violence is taking place there. You (Singh’s counsel) know it very well,” the bench had said while agreeing to hear the plea of BJP candidate.
Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, appearing for Singh, had said around 20 criminal cases had been lodged against him from 4 April to May 20 due to political vendetta and to ensure that he remains away during counting of votes.
"If I go back without protection, I will be arrested. Tomorrow I have to be present at counting," the senior lawyer had said on behalf of Singh, adding that lawyers are on strike in Kolkata, which means the Calcutta High Court could not be approached.
(With inputs from PTI.)
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