Court reserves order on businessman Sana Satish Babu’s bail plea

A Delhi court will pronounce on August 17 its order on a bail plea of Hyderabad-based businessman Sana Satish Babu, who is arrested in connection with a money-laundering case involving meat exporter Moin Qureshi.

Special Judge Anuradha Shukla Bharadwaj reserved the order after hearing arguments in the matter.

Babu is currently in judicial custody. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is probing the purported purchase of shares worth Rs 50 lakh of a company linked to Qureshi by Babu.

During the hearing of arguments on Saturday, the ED opposed the bail application saying the probe was still going on and the charge sheet was not filed in the case.

“If granted the relief, the accused may tamper with the evidence or influence the probe,” the cental probe agency said, adding that the accused may flee if released on bail.

In his bail application, Babu told the court that his custodial interrogation was already over and he was not required for further probe.

“No purpose will be served by keeping him (Babu) in further custody,” senior advocate K T S Tulsi, appearing for Babu, told the court.

Babu was earlier called as a witness in the money-laundering case but was later made an accused.

He was arrested on July 26 under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, the ED had said, adding that he was grilled for a few hours and taken into custody as he was “not cooperating” in the probe.

The CBI’s special probe team, under then Special Director Rakesh Asthana, had recommended Babu’s arrest in its own case against Qureshi and others.

However, in October last year, the Alok Kumar Verma-led agency registered a case of alleged corruption against Asthana and his subordinates, based on Babu’s complaint. Babu alleged that he had paid a bribe to get relief in the case.

Officials close to Asthana levelled similar allegations against Verma. The matter reached the Central Vigilance Commission, which initiated an inquiry into the charges and counter-charges.

Eventually, both Verma and Asthana were divested of their powers.

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