TMC’s Kunal Ghosh guilty of attempting suicide in jail in 2014

Suspended Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh.

Suspended Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh. | Photo Credit: PTI

An MP/MLA court in Kolkata on Friday found Trinamool Congress State General Secretary Kunal Ghosh guilty of an attempt to commit suicide eight years ago when he was lodged at a correctional home in connection with the Saradha chit fund scam case.

The court, however, did not impose any punishment on the TMC spokesperson for the offence.

During a court production on November 10, 2014, Ghosh who was then a Rajya Sabha MP suspended by the TMC had threatened to end his life if the CBI did not take action against those he claimed were really involved in the multi-crore scam.

Three days later, he consumed sleeping pills in Presidency Correctional Home and was treated at the state-run SSKM Hospital.

The correctional home authorities filed an FIR against Ghosh on the charge of attempting to commit suicide under Section 309 of the IPC, which invites simple imprisonment for a term up to one year or fine if proved.

The MP/MLA court judge Manojyoti Bhattacharyya found Ghosh, a journalist turned politician, guilty but released him after an admonition.

Citing a Supreme Court judgement that sentence of imprisonment or fine is not compulsory but discretionary in such cases, the judge said that considering the circumstances, age, conduct and status of Ghosh, it is a fit case where, instead of sentencing the accused to any punishment, he should be released after due admonition.

The judge noted that Ghosh is a journalist by profession and at the time of the incident he was a Rajya Sabha member and he was booked in the sensitive Saradha chit fund case.

"It is very normal for a person with reputation when booked in such cases has to face severe stress in life," the bench observed.

Stating that something happened in peculiar circumstances, Ghosh had earlier requested the court not to consider the incident as an offence for sentence.

Following the order, Ghosh said that with the court convicting him, no one would now say that he had resorted to theatrics and had not really made the attempt.

"Kunal Ghosh will carry on with his battle even by risking his own life," he said.

Stating that he is in a political party and will continue working for it, he said that if there is any issue-based personal battle, that will also continue.

The TMC had sent Ghosh who was then the chief of Saradha Media, a company of the chit fund group, to the Rajya Sabha but suspended him after a fallout in 2013.

In the same year, Ghosh was arrested by Bidhannagar Police in connection with the Saradha scam.

The CBI later took him in custody after taking over the case on a direction of the Calcutta High Court.

He was granted bail by the high court in October 2016 after spending more than two years and ten months in custody.

Those in distress or having suicidal tendencies may seek help and counselling support by contacting any of the following numbers of Thanal, a centre for befriending persons instituted by the Indian Medical Association, Kozhikode. Ph: 04952760000. Whatsapp: 7902281306.

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Printable version | May 14, 2022 11:27:30 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/tmcs-kunal-ghosh-guilty-of-attempt-to-commit-suicide-in-jail-in-2014/article65413186.ece