Maneka Gambhir approaches Calcutta HC for permission to travel abroad
In her application to Justice Tirthankar Ghosh's bench, Gambhir said that her mother, who stays in Bangkok is not keeping well and hence there is an urgent necessity for her to travel.
Kolkata: Maneka Gambhir, the sister-in-law of Trinamool Congress national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee, approached a single-judge bench of the Calcutta High Court on Monday for permission to travel to abroad.
In her application to Justice Tirthankar Ghosh’s bench, Gambhir said that her mother, who stays in Bangkok is not keeping well and hence there is an urgent necessity for her to travel.
However, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has opposed the request on grounds that another single-judge bench of the court had already refused to entertain a similar plea.
In his argument, the ED counsel also said that since a lookout notice has already been issued against Gambhir, it would not be right to allow her to travel abroad.
However, Justice Ghosh has admitted Gambhir’s petition and the matter will come up for hearing on Wednesday.
On the night of September 10, the immigration department at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata denied Gambhir from boarding a flight to the Thai capital due to the lookout notice issued against her by the ED.
In response, she filed a contempt of court petition against the probe agency ED at the single-judge bench of Justice Moushumi Bhattacharya.
Her contention was that when there was a prior court order barring the central agency from adopting any cohesive action against her, such a refusal amounted to contempt of court.
However on September 30, Justice Bhattacharya’s bench dismissed the contempt of court petition and observed that neither the ED nor the immigration department had resorted to any sort of contempt of court by denying her the permission to board the flight.
Gambhir was questioned by the ED on September 12 in connection with the central agency’s ongoing probe on the coal smuggling scam in West Bengal.
ED sleuths have also questioned Abhishek Banerjee and his wife Rujira Narula Banerjee on this count.