ICICI-Videocon loan case: CBI gets time to reply to Kochhars’ plea against arrest

Court suggested they could seek bail since they are in judicial custody

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Tuesday, January 03, 2023, 11:33 PM IST
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Image credit: Salman Ansari, FPJ

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Tuesday granted time till January 6 to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file its reply to the petitions filed by former Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of ICICI Bank Chanda Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar challenging their arrest in alleged ICICI-Videocon quid pro quo loan case.

A division bench of Justices Revati Mohite-Dere and PK Chavan said that the agency ought to be given a chance to file a reply after its counsel Raja Thakare sought time to file an affidavit in reply to the contentions.

“CBI has to be given time to file a reply. The question before us is about the illegal arrest. With both in judicial custody, you can apply for bail," said Justice Dere.

Senior counsels Amit Desai and Vikram Chaudhari, appearing for Ms Kochhar and Mr Kochhar respectively, pointed out that their son would be getting married in the coming week.

The counsels also clarified that the couple has not applied for bail since their petition is seeking release.

The HC has kept the plea for hearing on January 6.

Kochhars were arrested on December 24 by CBI in New Delhi and produced before a Special CBI Court in Mumbai on December 25.

On December 27, the couple approached the HC claiming illegal arrest by the CBI. Their plea contended that prior mandatory sanctions under the Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA) were not obtained before their arrest. It was also contended that their arrest was illegal as no notice was issued to them to appear before the agency as is required, when the punishment for the offences is above seven years.

They sought that the HC quash the remand order of the special court.

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