The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday indicated in the Bombay High Court that it may arrest Sameer Wankhede in the case registered by it in the Cordelia drugs bust bribery case.
CBI counsel Kuldeep Patil made this statement while opposing any blanket protection from arrest to the former zonal director of the Narcotics Control Bureau.
Court Grants Interim Relief to Sameer Wankhede, Restricts Media Interactions
Following this, the court extended interim, conditional relief to Wankhede from coercive action till June 8 and also restrained him from interacting with the media, especially after WhatsApp chats between him and actor Shah Rukh Khan became public.
Expressing displeasure, Justice Abhay Ahuja asked, “When the matter was sub judice, what was the need for circulating the chats? When you have subjected yourself to this court, why did you go to the media?”
Sameer Wankhede's Advocate Assures Court Chats Were Not Circulated
Wankhede’s advocate Abad Ponda, though, assured the court that the officer had not circulated any chats. He added that what was in the media was only the chats annexed to the petition.
“I have not gone to the media. I did not share. It [the chats] is limited to the petition. What is beyond the petition is not in the media.”
Court Directs Wankhede to Refrain from Publishing Material or Giving Press Statements
As per the HC’s directive now, Wankhede is not to publish any material by way of WhatsApp or any other mode on the subject in the petition or investigation, not give press statements, or tamper with evidence in any matter whatsoever.
The bench asked him to give an undertaking and submit the affidavit on the same by the end of the day.
Wankhede Ordered to Attend CBI Office and Submit Affidavit
The vacation bench of the HC also asked Wankhede to attend the CBI office as and when called by the investigating officer. The bench asked him to file an affidavit by the end of the day stating that he will abide by the conditions.
NCB Affidavit: Main points
The petitioner claims have spent Rs82,87,399 on a flat in Goregaon valued at Rs2,45,49,918. The declaration of this property is different in his statements and the documents tendered. The source and amount of this transaction needs detailed enquiry.
It can be seen that as per income tax returns of two financial years – April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2020 – of the petitioner, his income was Rs31,55,883 and his wife’s income was Rs14,05,577. Their total income was Rs45,61,460, whereas the expenditure on the two unreported transactions – the Maldives trip (Rs7,25,000) and the Rolex purchase (Rs22,05,000) – amounts to Rs29,30,000.
The petitioner has stated that his wife had invested Rs1.25 crore in one of their flats before their marriage. Their date of marriage is February 8, 2017. They have not provided the income tax returns for 2016-17. Thus the source of the money used to pay Rs1.25 crore is not clear.
The petitioner purchased a Rolex Gold watch with a maximum retail price of Rs22,05,000 for Rs17,40,000 only, on credit. There are multiple invoices/quotes for the Rolex.
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