Tension-free Chovoth for Digambar

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 12 September 2015 19:43 IST

Former chief minister Digambar Kamat will celebrate Chovoth without any tension or fear of arrest.

While Goa will celebrate Chovoth on 17 September, the hearing on the petition filed by Goa police, challenging Kamat’s anticipatory bail, would continue beyond Chovoth.

The crime branch has challenged the CBI court order, granting anticipatory bail to Kamat, before the high court.

While arguing before the Bombay high court at Goa, crime branch counsel Santosh Rivonkar has once again pressed for Kamat’s custody, to interrogate him.

The former CM is facing a serious charge of accepting a bribe of Rs 1.2 crore from Louis Berger International Inc., the US-based consultancy firm.

The firm has admitted before the Department of Justice in New Jersey of paying bribes of total Rs six crore to ‘a’ minister and government officials in Goa to get the consultancy contract of JICA project.

Louis Berger was selected for consultancy to implement the project, worth Rs 1031 crore, funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Kamat however has succeeded in evading arrest from 5 August, the day his former cabinet colleague and former PWD minister Churchill Alemao was arrested for similar charges.

Alemao is still serving a judicial custody, after seven-day police custody, for the last 42 days.

Both of them are charged to be the main co-conspirators in the bribery case.

 

After lengthy hearings before the CBI court, Kamat was granted anticipatory bail on 19 August, almost after 14 days.

While the crime branch immediately rushed to the high court challenging this order, the petition was challenged on technical grounds by Kamat, stating it should not be admitted.

The high court however ruled on 4 September that petition against Kamat’s anticipatory bail order would be allowed to be heard.

The actual hearing on the merits of the petition began only on 10 September.

Rivonkar, the police counsel, is yet to finish his arguments and it would be continued on 16 September, the date fixed for the next hearing.

Following this would be the arguments by Kamat’s counsel, not knowing for how many days it would continue.

The high court, which hears criminal matters only in the evening, may then give more time to the police counsel for counter-arguments.

And then will come the order of the high court on whether Kamat’s anticipatory bail would be rejected or not.

Till then, the former chief minister Kamat can definitely celebrate Chovoth not only for two days but even may be the full 11-day celebration of Goa. 

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Previous Comments

Digambar is innocent. Just like Manmohan Singh, his name gets spoilt when other fat rogues in the party do corruption.

- Goan, Goa | 15 th September 2015 19:00

 

Hope he spends Diwali in the jail. Because he belongs there.

- Anand, Margao | 13 th September 2015 22:38

 

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