West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today took to the streets and stood by her arrested Cabinet colleague, Madan Mitra.

Mitra, the State Transport and Sports Minster, was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday in relation to the Saradha scam.

“I will not believe that Madan is a thief and that he had to take money from Saradha Group to feed his family. These are lies and are being spread deliberately to malign him and our party,” Banerjee said while addressing a protest rally.

The Trinamool Congress had taken out a rally this afternoon to protest the Minister’s arrest and on the issue of the central agency being used for “political purposes”.

According to Banerjee, the CBI was politically motivated and was acting at the behest of “higher authorities in power”. Being one of the staunch opposition parties at the Centre, attempts were now being made to malign it, she said.

Chaos at Court

Meanwhile, there was chaos at the Alipore court premises where the arrested minister was to appear.

Angry Trinamool supporters tried to stop the minister from being presented before the court.

Although security arrangements were beefed up earlier in the day, the agitators swelled in numbers as the day progressed. They were able to break down some of the barricades.

Blockades were put up in different places in the city (southern parts) and in Mitra's constituency (Kamarhati), on the fringes of the city, yesterday evening after news of his arrest spread.