Bizman in Mamata Entourage Held

Published: 23rd February 2015 05:59 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd February 2015 05:59 AM   |  A+A-

KOLKATA: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee was embarrassed when a businessman, who accompanied her to Bangladesh, was arrested immediately after landing at the airport here in connection with a fraud case.

mamatha.jpgShibaji Panja, who runs a Bengali television channel, was arrested by the Immigration Department when he returned along with Mamata from Dhaka on Saturday night.

Delhi Police had issued a lookout notice against him on charges of defrauding and economic conspiracy.

Panja was on Sunday produced before a local court, which granted him bail as the Delhi Police did not turn up to take him to the national capital.

Mamata, who had on several occasions taken Panja to trips abroad, immediately distanced herself from the entire episode, saying, “He is a businessman and I have nothing to do with him.”

The opposition parties, however, cried foul and demanded that Mamata too should be included in a case of conspiracy, as she had taken him to Dhaka and embarrassed the country.

Shibaji.jpg“She had knowingly taken Panja, who was involved in economic offences for a long time, and she is also a beneficiary. The Centre should step in and start an inquiry against her too,” said veteran Congress leader Abdul Mannan.

BJP state president Rahul Sinha, meanwhile, said it was very much a proof of Mamata’s involvement in corruption. 

CPM Lok Sabha MP Mohammad Salim also attacked Mamata, saying, “A man is known by the company he keeps. She encourages corruption and her core team includes such people, who are economic offenders. She disgraced the country by taking him to Bangladesh as she did not go there as West Bengal Chief Minister only but represented the country. It’s a shame for us.”

Panja, who runs Kolkata TV, is close to Mamata  and the channel has leaning towards the TMC Government in the state.

Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien alleged that it was politically motivated. “Why did they not arrest him earlier?” he said.

The Delhi Police had issued the lookout notice on February 19 night, but by that time Panja had already flown to Dhaka with Mamata.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp