A day after securing bail from the Delhi High Court in INX Media case, Karti Chidambaram on Saturday got another relief from a city court that granted him protection from arrest till April 16 in Aircel-Maxis matter arising out of the 2G spectrum cases lodged by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED).
Special Judge O P Saini granted the relief to Karti as both the investigative agencies had sought three weeks to file their responses on the anticipatory bail plea moved by Karti. An anticipatory bail application was filed on behalf of Karti apprehending arrest in the Aircel-Maxis case on a false accusation.
Arguing in the CBI case earlier in the day, senior lawyer Kapil Sibal said Karti was “arbitrarily” arrested by the CBI in connection to the INX Media investigation and, therefore, it was apprehended that he may also be arrested without any reason in the Aircel-Maxis case.
“There is no material at all against him and despite that he was summoned by the CBI and he joined the investigation,” said Sibal, who is appearing for Karti.
Sibal said there was neither any allegation against Karti in the Aircel-Maxis case nor there was anything to show that he knew the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) officials. Sibal also referred to the February 2, 2017 verdict of the court, which had discharged former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi in the Aircel-Maxis.
Opposing his contention, CBI public prosecutor K K Goel said that the application is without merits, as the applicant has nowhere disclosed as to on what basis he apprehends his immediate arrest in the Aircel-Maxis case. “As of today (March 24) there is no reason for the applicant to apprehend his arrest in the instant case,” Goel submitted.
In rebuttal, Sibal said he had no objection if three weeks’ time was granted to the CBI for filing of reply, provided the applicant is protected against arbitrary arrest during the three-week time sought by the CBI.
When the court asked as to what shall happen to the applicant during the entire three weeks’ time sought by the CBI for filing reply, the public prosecutor for CBI submitted that “law shall prevail.”
“Since three weeks’ time is prayed for by the CBI, by submitting that during this period law shall prevail, apparently it means that as a matter of legal and judicial propriety, the applicant shall not be arrested by the CBI during the pendency of the instant application,” Special Judge Saini said.
He also said that Karti shall appear before the investigating officer and join the investigation as and when directed.