Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Oct 10:
The special CBI court here allowed the CBI, which is probing the multi-thousand crore Odisha chit fund scam, to take Mumbai based model and television producer Preeti Bhatia on a four-day remand this evening.
The court, however, set some conditions for the interrogation of Bhatia during her remand period.
“Bhatia’s interrogation will be done in the presence of either his family members or her advocate. They will, however, be made to sit at a distance from her so as to make the conversation between him and the interrogator inaudible to them,” Bhatia’s counsel Benudhar Panda told reporters after the ruling.
“My client has no connection with the chit fund scam. Listening to our petition to free Bhatia from any type of harassment, the court directed the Investigating officer (IO) of CBI to give utmost importance to it during her interrogation. Moreover, the court said Bhatia should be fully visible to his kin or advocate during the interrogations,” Panda said.
Three lady police constables would be deployed to guard and check the health condition of Bhatia during the interrogation.
CBI counsel Kali Prasad Mishra had earlier pleaded for a five-day remand of Bhatia for further interrogation on her alleged links with Artha Tatwa group chairman Pradip Sethy.
The judge asked Bhatia to be produced at the court on Tuesday after her remand period is over.
While Bhatia’s counsel had moved a bail petition on her behalf, it was not heard today. It would be taken up at the next hearing in the case on Tuesday, the judge said.
Bhatia was produced in the court in the evening after being arrested by the CBI earlier in the day.
She was arrested after she failed to account for the monetary transactions with Sethy, CBI sources said.