'Broke' former Coal Secretary wants to face trial inside prison

Gupta replied that he was in a difficult spot financially and was unable to even appoint a lawyer.

Published: 17th August 2016 04:02 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th August 2016 04:02 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: In an interesting turn of events, former Coal Secretary H C Gupta, an accused in several coal scam cases who is presently out on bail, on Tuesday told a special CBI court that he intended to “face trial from inside the jail” and withdraw his personal bond to secure bail due to financial difficulties.

After Gupta moved the application before Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar, the court extensively enquired about the reasons for filing such a plea.

Gupta replied that he was in a difficult spot financially and was unable to even appoint a lawyer. “Accused H C Gupta has moved an application seeking to withdraw his personal bond submitted earlier for his release on bail and also to withdraw the authorisation letter in favour of his advocates. Along with the application, a note explaining the reasons for moving the aforesaid application has also been annexed,” the court noted in its order. “Gupta states that he does not wish to examine any witness in his defence and intends to face the trial from inside the jail. Upon this, Gupta was extensively enquired about the reasons for moving of the said application. Gupta also stated that he was facing financial difficulties in engaging a lawyer,” the judge said. After Gupta told the court about  his inability to hire a lawyer, the court told him that he could be provided services of an advocate from New Delhi Legal Aid Services Authority or an amicus curiae could be appointed on his behalf.

Gupta, however, refused to avail such services, following which the court gave him time to think over his plea and posted the matter for hearing on Wednesday.

During the day’s proceedings, the court talked to Gupta’s son and wife regarding the application moved by him.

The court is presently recording the statements of defence witnesses in the case involving Madhya Pradesh-based Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Ltd (KSSPL) and others.

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