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Rediff.com  » News » Give 10 days time to Zee boss, son prior to arrest: Court

Give 10 days time to Zee boss, son prior to arrest: Court

December 20, 2012 15:26 IST
A court in New Delhi told the police to give ten working days time to Zee Group Chairman Subhash Chandra and his son if it wants to arrest them in the case of alleged Rs 100 crore-extortion bid from Congress MP Naveen Jindal's firm by two editors of the news channel.

"You (crime branch of the Delhi police) proceed with the investigation, the moment you get evidence against them (Chandra and Goenka) then you approach the court to take permission to arrest them. In case arrest is required, you will have to give ten days time before arresting them," Additional Sessions Judge Raj Rani Mitra said.

The court passed the order while disposing of the anticipatory bail plea of Chandra and his son, Puneet Goenka, the managing director at Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd.

Earlier, on December 6, the court had granted them interim protection from arrest till December 14 on an application filed by the father-son duo, seeking the relief from arrest in the form of interim protection or anticipatory bail.

The court had then directed them to "join and cooperate" with the probe in the case of alleged extortion bid by Zee News editor Sudhir Chaudhary and Zee Business editor Samir Ahluwalia.

On December 14, the protection was further extended till on Thursday. However, on Thursday, the prosecution opposed their plea for further extension of interim protection.

Earlier, during the arguments on anticipatory bail, Goenka's counsel Geeta Luthra contended that her client has "cooperated in the investigation since the day interim protection was granted by this court and he has even surrendered his passport so there is no question of fleeing from justice."

Chandra's counsel Vijay Aggarwal also contended that he has cooperated in the investigation and there was no fear of him fleeing from justice.

Their anticipatory bail pleas were, however, opposed by Additional Public Prosecutor Rajiv Mohan who submitted that they can't escape from their liability as the channel is being owned and run by them.

"Chandra was evasive during the interrogation and he has even not revealed about his US/UK mobile number from which he was in contact with Zee Business editor Samir Ahluwalia during the time of campaign on coal scam aired on their channel against Naveen Jindal," he submitted.

The Delhi police had been submitting that Chaudhary and Ahluwalia have not acted alone and that the whole episode was planned in collusion with the seniors of the Zee group in a conspiracy hatched to extort Rs 100 crore for their channel.

Both Chaudhary and Ahluwalia, who were arrested by the Delhi police on November 27, were granted bail on December 17.             They have been booked under section 384 (extortion), 420 (cheating), 120 B (criminal conspiracy) and 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other imprisonment) of the IPC.

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