No bail for Anmol’s friends,prosecution calls them suspects

Sarna died under mysterious circumstances last Friday night after he and his friends allegedly partied with LSD.

Written by D K RITURAJ | New Delhi | Published:September 21, 2013 12:43 am

Setting aside arguments that a parallel media trial has hampered the investigation into NRI Anmol Sarna’s death,a city court on Friday dismissed the bail pleas of Sarna’s friends who were arrested on charges of possession of illegal drugs.

Sarna died under mysterious circumstances last Friday night after he and his friends allegedly partied with LSD.

Defence counsel K T S Tulsi said,“The complainants are entitled to support and sympathy but they cannot dictate the investigation.” The matter,he said,should be dealt “according to law” and “not according to emotion”.

The defence also challenged the violation of procedure when Sarna’s parents had addressed the judge pointing out alleged irregularities in police probe. “The complainant has a right to address the court once closure report is filed… not before that,” Tulsi said.

According to the defence,Sarna’s friends — Shivank Gambhir,Madhav Bhandari,Pranil Shah,Ritham Girhotra — were arrested under sections 22,27 and 29 of the NDPS Act,which are bailable offences.

“Police do not have any material evidence against them… even the drugs recovered are in small quantities that do not violate NDPS Act… they are kept here only because the investigation in the case is pending…,” Tulsi said.

But the prosecution said the four were behind bars because they were suspected in Sarna’s murder and not on charges of possessing drugs. “This is just the beginning of the investigation… if they are granted bail,then it would amount to discharging them from charges of murder,” the prosecution counsel said.

According to the prosecution,the unexplained nature of injuries on Sarna’s body raised suspicions on his four friends.

Responding to defence claims that several theories were being floated,Akshay Sharma,counsel for Sarna’s family,said,“The FIR had a different story… seven days after the investigation there is a different story… we have found a message being circulated at 1.20 am — 13 minutes after the incident,that one of our friends has killed another … we have to look into it.”

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