Digambar gets advantage Chovoth, order may come after 2 weeks

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 14 September 2015 18:47 IST

While Churchill Alemao continues to be in jail with high rejecting his petition, Digambar Kamat may get a further respite of two more weeks, before the high court decides on the anticipatory bail granted to him.

After delivering order of rejecting the petition of Alemao to cancel his bail, the high court today heard the matter related to Kamat’s anticipatory bail.

Further hearing however has been postponed to next week, on 21 September, after five days of Chovoth.

Adv Santosh Rivonkar, counsel of the crime branch of Goa police, completed his arguments today.

The next hearing was then fixed on Wednesday, but Kamat’s counsel Parag Rao pleaded for postponement since 16 September is Tay (तय), the eve of Chovoth when festival celebrations actually begin.

The high court has Chovoth holidays on 17 and 18 December, while next two days are Saturday and Sunday.

If Adv Surendra Desai, Kamat’s counsel, takes three days to argue for the former CM from Monday to Wednesday, the court may give some time for the crime branch for counter-arguments and then fix the date of order.

In that case, the order on Kamat’s anticipatory bail may not come before 28 September.

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

Crime branch has asked for the custody of Kamat, the co-conspirator with Alemao, in the Louis Berger bribery case.

Kamat has succeeded in evading arrest from 5 August, the day Alemao was arrested on similar charges.

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

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).

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.

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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 19:01

 

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