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Odisha chit fund scam: HC defers hearing on Preeti Bhatia’s bail by two weeks


Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, Feb 6:

The Odisha High Court on Thursday deferred the bail petition hearing of Mumbai-based model cum television serial producer Preeti Bhatia, now lodged in the Jharpada jail, by two weeks.

Preeti Bhatia ( pic- Biswaranjan Mishra)
Preeti Bhatia ( pic- Biswaranjan Mishra)

Hearing the case, Justice Sangam Kumar Sahoo posted the next hearing after two weeks as the petitioner sought time.

It may be recalled that Bhatia was arrested by the CBI on October 10 last year for her alleged business links with chit fund firm AT Group’s chief Pradeep Kumar Sethy.

The CBI had raided Bhatia’s house in Mumbai on August 16 and had found business links between Bhatia and Pradeep Kumar Sethy, who are directors in a company named Prism Heights Films & Entertainment Private Limited, with its registered office at Santa Cruz (West) in Mumbai. The company was registered in 2010. Apart from Sethy and Bhatia, Indu Dewan was one of the directors of the company.

Senior lawyers HK Ratsingh and HK Rout are the counsels for Bhatia in the case.

On the other hand, Justice SK Mishra posted the anticipatory bail plea of former Additional Government Advocate (AGA) Debasish Panda hearing to February 12. However, the interim bail granted to Panda will be in force, the court said.

Notably, the CBI in June last year had booked Debashis Panda for alleged offences under several sections of IPC and the Prize Chits and Money Circulation Scheme (Banning) Act, 1978. Besides, he has been accused of criminal conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, cheating, forgery for the purpose of cheating, using as genuine a forged document and criminal intimidation.

Senior lawyers Dharanidhar Nayak and Arun Kumar Budhia are the counsels for Panda in the case.