KOLKATA: The Calcutta high court refused bail to former Pailan Group chairman Apurba Saha unless he furnish surety of Rs 450-500 crore. Saha was arrested from Kolkata by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in October 2019 on charges of being involved in a Ponzi scam.
Saha’s counsel moved the court praying for his medical attention during the ongoing pandemic. The CBI, however, contended that he is healthy and has not contracted Covid-19. Saha’s lawyers also pleaded that his detention may no longer be required as he has already been in custody for over a year. It was also submitted by the petitioner that the Ponzi scheme was worth Rs 394 crore and the value of property already seized by the authorities is higher than this.
The Centre, represented by additional solicitor general YJ Dastoor and assisted by advocate Phiroze Edulji that sum involved is close to Rs 600 crore. After going through all details, the bench of Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Aniruddha Roy observed that what is being offered as security by Saha are dud assets that may be encumbered many times over.
“The petitioner wants his immediate release in lieu of the useless documents pertaining to the properties that he claims to have submitted. Considering that many middle-class families may have been wiped out because of the disingenuous scheme run by the petitioner, he does not qualify to roam about freely in society till such time the petitioner puts up the amounts garnered by him or his instrumentalities from the market in the form of cash security,” the court directed while refusing bail.