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Home > News > PTI

Shardaben's anticipatory bail plea rejected

April 25, 2007 22:57 IST

Calling BJP MP Babubhai Katara as "carrier agent", a Delhi Court on Wednesday dismissed the anticipatory bail plea of Shardaben Katara in the human trafficking case in which her husband is facing probe.

The court also dismissed the bail applications of Katara's two sons Bhaveshbhai and Amitbhai and daughter Gaytriben Kishori.

"The investigation is at its very initial stage. Record shows that Babuhbhai Katara, husband of the applicant... was working as carrier agent and he for that purpose was using the diplomatic passport of his wife," Additional Sessions Judge V K Bansal said, adding "arrival stamps in Shardaben's passport were found to be fake."

"The fact that it is a case involving human transportation racket and the investigation is still at its very inception, in my opinion applicants do not deserve any anticipatory bail," the court said.

Earlier in the day, Kataras' counsel Ajay Chopra said that the role of applicants in the alleged offence was nothing and there were reasonable apprehensions that they may be arrested just because of their relation with the accused.

Pleading ignorance, counsel for Shardaben said, "She is an illiterate lady and was not aware of any such alleged activities. A diplomatic passport was issued in her name only after her husband was elected MP."

Opposing the plea, Public Prosecutor said, "we have not even issued the notices against them (Kataras) seeking their co-operation in the ongoing probe in the case."

On being asked about the complicity of Katara's kin in the offence, police said that they, after coming to know about the incident in Delhi, had hurriedly withdrawn around Rs 7 lakh from their bank accounts, which raises suspicion.

Delhi high court had on Tuesday declined to grant anticipatory bail to Shardaben and had asked her to approach the trial court.

Her husband Babubhai Katara was arrested at the international airport here on April 18 when he tried to take one Paramjeet Kaur and a boy to Toronto in Canada by allegedly using his wife and son's passports.

Later, an FIR against Katara and others under section 419 (cheating by impersonation), 420 (cheating), 471 (using forged documents as genuine) and 120B (conspiracy) of IPC were lodged at the IGI airport police station.

The MP has also been booked under the Passport Act.

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