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Hassan Ali to be in judicial custody after ED grilling

Source: PTI
March 18, 2011 15:51 IST
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Hassan Ali Khan with his wife RheemaPune-based stud-farm owner Hassan Ali Khan would have to remain in jail even after four days of interrogation by Enforcement Directorate, with the Supreme Court saying on Friday that he cannot be out on bail till its further order.

A Bench of Justices B Sudershan Reddy and S S Nijjar said that after four days of police custody give to ED, he will be remanded in judicial custody.

Clarifying its Thursday's order on cancelling his bail, the Bench said that it had stayed the lower court order which had granted bail and it would remain suspended till further order.

The court's clarification came after Khan's advocate submitted that there is a lack of clarity on what would happen to him after four days of remand given to ED.

"Once we have the stayed the order, it will remain suspended till further order. After four days of police custody, he has to be in judicial custody," the Bench said.

The Bench on Thursday cancelled his bail in a money laundering case and remanded him to four days ED custody.

The apex court, however, agreed to give early hearing to Khan's case and preponed the date of hearing from April 4 to March 28.

Khan, 53, surrendered before the Enforcement Directorate in Mumbai on Thursday night after the Supreme Court order.

A Mumbai court on March 11 rejected ED's plea for custodial interrogation of Khan on the ground that the agency had not gathered sufficient evidence or made any case to justify its plea for Khan's custodial interrogation.

Khan is also facing a Rs 70,000 crore (Rs 700 billion) tax demand notice from the Income Tax department as well as the ED probe.

The ED had arrested Khan on March 7 after being pulled up by the Supreme Court for its failure to ensure his custodial interrogation.

But the trial court had let him off.

Staying Mumbai Principal Sessions Judge M L Tahaliyani's order of granting bail to Khan, the Bench had said it was 'deeply disturbed' at the manner in which the trial court judge had rejected the ED's contention and granted bail while giving a lengthy order for it.

"The way the proceedings were conducted, we are deeply disturbed," the Bench had observed.

"The order passed by the learned judge has created an extraordinary situation which may ultimately frustrate the entire investigation.

"Having regard to the extraordinary situation, complexity of the issue and the magnitude of the case, we deem it fit to stay the order," the Bench had said.

Image: Hassan Ali Khan with his wife Rheema. | Photograph: Reuters

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