A Delhi court is likely to decide tomorrow on the bail pleas of DMK MP Kanimozhi and seven other accused in the 2G spectrum allocation case.
Special CBI Judge O.P. Saini had on September 24 reserved the order on the bail pleas of Kanimozhi, Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Usman Balwa, former Telecom Minister A. Raja’s former private secretary R.K. Chandolia, Kalaignar TV MD Sharad Kumar, Directors of Kusegaon Fruits & Vegetables Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal, and Bollywood producer Karim Morani.
Besides them, the court had on Tuesday reserved its order on the bail plea of former telecom secretary Siddhartha Behura.
The CBI had preferred not to oppose the bail pleas of Kanimozhi and four others during the arguments on the ground that they faced specific charges, apart from the “umbrella section” of 120-B (criminal conspiracy) IPC, which entail five years sentence as maximum punishment.
The agency has also slapped charges of criminal breach of trust under section 409 of the IPC which carries life term as maximum punishment, against Ms. Kanimozhi and four others.
The agency, however, had opposed the bail pleas of Mr. Shahid Balwa, Mr. Chandolia and Mr. Behura.
Regarding Mr. Shahid Balwa and Mr. Chandolia, special public prosecutor U.U. Lalit had told the court that they should be denied bail as maximum punishment for the specific charges levelled against them was seven years.
Opposing Mr. Behura’s bail plea, Mr. Lalit had said he was earlier indicted with charges punishable up to seven years of jail term whereas now he is also charged under section 409 of the IPC, carrying maximum life term on conviction.
Senior advocate Altaf Ahmed, appearing for Ms. Kanimozhi and Mr. Sharad Kumar, had said as per the June 22 order of the Supreme Court, both of them could approach the special court seeking bail after framing of charges. The court had framed charges against all the accused on October 22.
Mr. Morani’s counsel Siddharth Luthra had sought bail saying his health condition was not good and that the probe against him was complete and charges too have been framed.
Mr. Shahid Balwa’s counsel Vijay Aggarwal had said he was willing to deposit his 55 per cent share in Etisalat DB with the court as pre-requisite condition for bail.
Arguing on bail pleas of Mr. Asif and Mr. Rajiv, Mr. Aggarwal had said these are two persons who are in custody for the longest time as far as supplementary charge sheet is concerned.
Senior advocate Aman Lekhi, appearing for Mr. Behura, had claimed that CBI was discriminating among various accused in the case by not opposing the bail pleas of some of them for political considerations.
Besides these accused, the court had also framed charges against Raja, DB Realty MD Vinod Goenka, Managing Director of Unitech Ltd Sanjay Chandra, Reliance ADAG top executives Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair and telecom firms Reliance Telecom, Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Pvt Ltd.
The court had found prima facie evidence to proceed with the trial against all the accused in the case.