The Calcutta High Court on Wednesday directed that a notice by police to Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari on a complaint by four MLAs alleging that he threatened them be kept in abeyance till the next date of hearing.

Moving a petition seeking quashing of proceedings against Adhikari, his counsel claimed before the court that the MLAs - Krishna Kalyani, Biswajit Das, Tanmoy Ghosh and Somen Roy - were elected on BJP ticket but later switched to the ruling Trinamool Congress violating the law of defection.

Directing that the matter be listed for final hearing on August 2, Justice Bibek Chaudhuri ordered that in the meantime, operation of the notice under Section 41A (appearance before police officer) of the Code of Criminal Procedure issued by the investigating officer of the case on July 1 be kept in abeyance.

Advocate Rajdeep Majumder appeared for the Petitioner while Advocate Saswata Gopal Mukherjee appeared for the state and Advocate Ayan Bhattacharjee appeared for Respondent No. 2.

In a representation to the Speaker, the four MLAs alleged that Adhikari told them that he would send Income Tax department officials to their houses to implicate them in false cases and also threatened to kill them by engaging goons.

The alleged threat was made after they did not leave the House along with the Leader of Opposition on March 16 during a debate in the Budget session.

It was submitted before the court that the secretary of the Assembly sent the representation to the officer-in-charge of Hare Street police station of Kolkata Police requesting him to do the needful considering the gravity of the offence stated therein.

The police registered a criminal case on the basis of the representation under sections 341 (wrongful restraint), 166 (public servant disobeying law), 189 (threat or injury to public servant) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the IPC.

Adhikari's counsel Rajdeep Majumder submitted that a false case has been registered by the police only to harass the petitioner. He stated that the conduct of a member inside the House during a session cannot be called in question under a penal provision of the IPC or any other statute.

Click here to read/download Order

With PTI inputs