Former National Stock Exchange CEO Chitra Ramkrishna got bail from a Delhi court in a case pertaining to the illegal interception of MTNL lines at NSE during the 2009-2017 period and money laundering.
Bail was granted by Special CBI court judge Justice Sunena Sharma at Rouse Avenue Court.
The counsel for the accused told the court that the Delhi High Court has already given bail to one of the co-accused, Sanjay Pandey, in the same case and hence Ms. Ramakrishna also deserved bail.
“However, in the light of the aforementioned observation made by the High Court regarding lack of essential ingredient of the predicate offences, this court is inclined to grant bail to the applicant in the instant case,” the court said while pronouncing the bail order on Wednesday.
It added that considering the fact that the Delhi High Court has already granted bail to Mr. Pandey in the connected ED matter, which in the light of Section 45 PMLA embodies far more stringent conditions for grant of bail, there is no reason to decline bail to the applicant in the present case.
The bail was granted on the condition to furnish a personal bond in the sum of ₹1,00,000 with two sureties in the like amount. It also added that the accused has to remain in touch with the investigation officer (IO) of the case and cooperate in the investigation.
As per the FIR, senior officials of NSE, including Ms. Ramakrishna, conspired with a firm named iSec to cheat the NSE and its employees. In furtherance of this criminal conspiracy, iSec was hired for illegal interception of the phone calls of NSE employees. For said purpose, iSec was issued work orders in the guise of a Periodic Study of Cyber Vulnerabilities of NSE and the same was done in contravention of the provisions of the Telegraph Act as no permission was taken from competent authority as required under Section 5 of the Telegraph Act.
The FIR further stated that transcripts of these calls were provided by the firm iSec and received by the officials of NSE at the top level, which resulted in a breach of confidentiality and privacy of the employees of NSE and caused wrongful gain of ₹4.54 crores to iSec as payment for this task and corresponding wrongful loss to NSE.
The CBI had booked the accused, including Ms. Ramakrishna, under section 120-B, 409, 420 of IPC; Sec. 69 B, 72, 72A of the IT Act, Sections 20, 21, 24, 26 of the Indian Telegraph Act, Sec 3&6 of Indian Wireless Telegraphy Act and Sec 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of the PC Act.