Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, Apr 8:
The Odisha High Court on Wednesday kept its verdict reserved after completing the hearing on the anticipatory bail plea of Enforcement Directorate’s advocate Debashis Panda.
The hearing on Panda’s anticipatory bail plea was conducted by the single-member bench of Justice SK Mishra.
Panda, who was the former additional government advocate in the Artha Tatwa (AT) group chit fund case, has already been interrogated twice by the CBI in the last one week for his alleged links with the group’s CMD Pradeep Sethy.
In June last year, the CBI had booked Panda under the IPC and Prize Chits and Money Circulation Scheme (Banning) Act of 1978.
Panda, who was called over telephone by the central investigating agency to appear before it for recording his statements, however, moved the High Court seeking anticipatory bail and did not appear before the Investigating Officer (IO).
During the course of hearing of Panda’s petition in October last year, the High Court gave an interim protection to him. The court said that in the event of his arrest, he shall be released on bail by furnishing a personal bond of Rs 10,000.
The High Court on March 25 this year directed Panda to appear before CBI on April 2 observing that CBI has not been able to make up its mind whether to arrest Panda or cite him as a witness in the case. He was interrogated by the CBI for the second time on April 6.