A special sessions court here on Monday reserved the verdict on the anticipatory bail plea filed by Mumbai-based rights activist Teesta Setalvad and her husband Javed Anand in connection to alleged embezzlement of central government fund to the tune of Rs 1.40 crore.
The court said that it will pronounce the verdict on May 23.
According to the FIR lodged by Setalvad’s former close aide, Raees Khan Pathan, the NGO — Sabrang Trust — run by the couple, had received Rs 1.40 crore fund for education from the Ministry of Human Resources Development. The case is being probed by Ahmedabad Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) which had questioned the couple last month.
Assistant Commissioner of Police Rajdeepsinh Jhala has filed an affidavit in the court opposing the anticipatory bail plea. He has said that both the accused along with unidentified officers of MHRD “misused their position and took benefit”. He also alleged that “the accused spread communal enmity and have accused the Constitution as well as judiciary…”
According to the police, the grant received by the Trust under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan was transferred to the personal bank accounts of Setalvad and Anand.
On the other hand, Setalvad’s lawyers have argued that there is no illegality in spending of the fund as alleged by the Crime Branch. They argued that the fund had nothing to do with state of Gujarat yet the state’s Crime Branch was probing it.
Setalvad was active in Gujarat following the 2002 post Godhra riots and assisted the riot survivors legally.