Trinamool MP Tapas Paul gets bail in hate speech case

Kolkata, June 29 (IANS) Actor turned Trinamool Congress MP Tapas Paul was on Monday granted bail by a West Bengal court in a case over his alleged inflammatory remarks.

Charge-sheeted for bailable offences by the CID for his kill-and-rape remark, Paul surrendered before a court in Nadia district, following which he was granted bail.

“Today (Monday), Paul surrendered before the court, which granted him bail on furnishing a personal bond of Rs.5,000,” said a lawyer for the member of parliament.

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) filed the charge sheet in May in the court of additional chief judicial magistrate (Krishnanagar), charging Paul under Sections 506 and 509 of the Indian Penal Code.

The actor turned politician, who represents Krishnanagar Lok Sabha constituency, was caught on successive tapes in June last year, exhorting his partymen to kill Marxist workers and threatening to let loose “my boys” to rape their women.

Section 509 deals with words, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman and carries a maximum punishment of one-year simple imprisonment.

Section 506 deals with criminal intimidation and carries a maximum punishment of seven years if the threat is for causing death, grievous hurt or to impute unchastity to a woman.

During rallies held in villages across his constituency in Nadia district, Paul called on his supporters to slit the throats of Communist Party of India-Marxist activists and threatened to gun down rival political activists.

“If a CPI-M man dares to touch anybody, I will take out my gun and shoot him. I always carry a gun….I will destroy his entire clan. I will make their family pay dearly. I will ask my boys to go there. They will rape them and leave,” Paul had said then.

Several cases, including public interest litigations, were filed to demand a probe by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and the arrest and trial of Paul.

A Calcutta High Court bench of Justice Nishita Mhatre in September last year directed the CID to initiate a probe and file a first information report in the case.

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