BENGALURU:A CBI Special Court has dismissed the anticipatory bail pleas of Congress MLA Anil H Lad and his wife Aarti, directors of M/s VSL Mining Company, in connection with illegal export of iron ore.
In the judgement on Monday, Judge K H Mallappa stated that in so far as the allegation of double jeopardy is concerned, it has to be considered only if the charge-sheet is filed by the investigating officer. As such, Judge Mallappa said, “I am unable to accept the arguments of Anil and Aarti with respect to double jeopardy.”
The allegations of the couple that they have been falsely implicated will have to be decided only during the course of the trial since investigation is not yet completed. “Anil Lad is a sitting MLA from Ballari constituency. If he is at large on anticipatory bail, there is every chance of (him) tampering with prosecution witnesses and hampering the investigation. As such, I am unable to accept the arguments of their counsel ...,” Judge Malappa said, before dismissing the petitions filed under Section 438 of the CrPC.
The CBI counsel filed objection to the petitions, narrating how the case has been registered against the accused.
The Investigating Officer contended that the accused could not justify their procurement of iron ore from various miners/traders in terms of DMG permits. The politically-influential accused may influence the witnesses and hamper the investigation, which is at a crucial stage, the counsel said, arguing for the dismissal of the petitions.
Lad’s counsel countered that the company is of high repute and has been operating since 1957. It is not involved in any sort of illegal mining and excavation.
The petitioners are permanent residents of Bengaluru. They are ready and willing to offer surety for their appearance before the CBI as well as this court.
They also undertake that they would cooperate in the investigation, the counsel argued for allowing the bail petitions.
Lad approaches HC
Advocate Shankarappa has challenged this judgement on behalf of Anil Lad and his wife in the High Court. “The offences alleged therein are non-bailable and the CBI are making hectic efforts to arrest the petitioners. As such, the petitioners have serious apprehension that they would be arrested, harassed and humiliated by the CBI”, Shankarappa said in the petition which will come up for hearing soon.