Kanda remanded to 3 more days police custody

Former Haryana Minister Gopal Goyal Kanda, key accused in the Geetika Sharma suicide case, was on Saturday further remanded to 3-day police custody by a Delhi court after investigators alleged “non-cooperation” and sought to quiz him to recover mobile phones and a missing hard disc.

Delhi police, which sought seven days custody of Kanda for recovering three mobile phones of MDLR employees that he was using, was allowed by Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate D K Jangala to interrogate him for three more days in its custody.

Public prosecutor Rajiv Mohan said that Kanda was evasive in his replies regarding these mobile phones and the calls made from them.

“He was giving evasive answers. We had asked him to give those three mobile phones which he was using but his men are not cooperating with us to recover them. Mobile phones and hard disc aspect are very important for us.

“Through no other source we can recover the mobile phones and hard disc of Kanda’s computer, a crucial evidence, so his 7-day custody is needed,” the prosecutor said.

Police also required Kanda’s custody to recover Geetika’s mobile phone which she had surrendered after quitting the job in Kanda’s company, he said.

Accusing Kanda of non-cooperation, the prosecutor said that Kanda was not providing them the complete booklet of his passport, needed to ascertain the allegation that he went all the way to Dubai to threaten the victim to leave her job with Emirates airlines in July 2010.

Senior advocate Ramesh Gupta, appearing for Kanda, opposed the plea for police custody saying they have not brought any new evidence to show that Kanda abeted Geetika’s suicide.

“In police custody they are asking obnoxious questions from me. I have been grilled by DCP, ACP, SHO and other officials but nobody except the IO can question me,” Gupta said.

On August 18, the former Haryana Minister had been sent to seven days police remand by the court which said his custodial interrogation is necessary for recovery of various materials related to the case.

Seeking Kanda’s custody, prosecutor Rajiv Mohan had said that all the circumstances leading to the suicide of victim Geetika can be unearthed only by sustained custodial interrogation of the accused.

Kanda, was arrested in the wee hours of the morning of August 18 after being on the run for 10 days.

On August 16, a magisterial court had issued a non-bailable warrant (NBW) against the former Haryana minister. The court had asked the police to execute the arrest warrant by August 24.

Earlier, Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea was rejected by a sessions court and the Delhi High Court.

Kanda’s employee, Aruna Chaddha, a senior functionary with now defunct MDLR airlines, arrested on August 8 is in judicial custody in connection with the suicide of 23-year-old air hostess Geetika Sharma, who allegedly took her life on August 5 at her Ashok Vihar residence.

In her suicide note, Geetika had alleged that Kanda and Chaddha were harassing her to rejoin the former minister’s firm after she left the job.

Both Kanda and Chaddha have denied the allegations.

Suicide notes are not gospel truth: Kanda’s lawyer

Seeking anticipatory bail, former Haryana minister Gopal Goyal Kanda, wanted in connection with the suicide of former flight attendant Geetika Sharma, told the Delhi High Court on Tuesday that suicide notes cannot be taken as “gospel truth”.

“Suicide letters are written in anger and so any allegations can be levelled out of anger,” said senior advocate KTS Tusli, who is representing Kanda. He said the suicide notes left behind by Geetika could not be taken as gospel truth.

The young woman was found hanging from the ceiling of her house here on the night of Aug 4-5.

She left behind two suicide notes, blaming Kanda and Aruna Chaddha, senior executive in Kanda’s group now under arrest, for her suicide.

“I may be fond of her, she may be fond of me but that does not mean I incite her to commit suicide,” Tulsi said defending Kanda.

He said some other evidence was required to hold Kanda responsible for Geetika’s suicide.

“The reason given by trial court while dismissing anticipatory bail were that there was misuse of power by me, I have given preferential treatment to Geetika and I exploited her, but these are not offences under offence of abetment for commission of suicide,” Tulsi said.

He said Geetika was an ambitious girl and suicide was not in her mind.

“Even her mother and brother did not know she could commit suicide, how could I know,” Tulsi argued on Kanda’s behalf.

Appearing for Delhi Police, Additional Solicitor General Sidharth Luthra opposed Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea.

Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea was dismissed Aug 9 by a sessions court that said allegations against him were grave and serious and his bail plea had no merit.

Kanda was booked for abetment to Geetika’s suicide and criminal intimidation. He is yet to appear before Delhi Police for questioning.

Kanda began his career as a petty businessman and later became a millionaire property dealer. He floated MDLR Airlines in 2007.

He was elected to the Haryana assembly as an independent from Sirsa in October 2009. He joined the Congress-led government headed of Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

Court reserves order on Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea

The Delhi High Court Tuesday reserved its order on the anticipatory bail plea of former Haryana minister Gopal Goyal Kanda, wanted in connection with the suicide of former flight attendant Geetika Sharma.

Justice P.K. Bhasin reserved the order after counsel appearing for Kanda and Delhi Police concluded their arguments.

Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Sidharth Luthra, appearing for police, sought Kanda’s custodial interrogation to find out the conspiracy between him and co-accused Aruna Chaddha, senior executive in Kanda’s group now under arrest.

Senior advocate K.T.S. Tusli, who represented Kanda, sought anticipatory bail for him and said suicide notes left behind by Geetika could not be taken as gospel truth.

“Suicide letters are written in anger and so any allegations can be levelled out of anger,” he said.

Luthra said Kanda’s questioning was needed to access his computers and laptops which were missingfrom his office.

Opposing Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea, the ASG said: “The conduct of not joining the investigation, removal of all electronic items, including his laptop and his computers from office, is a case for refusal of anticipatory bail.”

“We have a problem in investigation. When we went to Kanda’s office, there were no computers,” police counsel told the court.

The ASG urged the court to dismiss the anticipatory bail plea of Kanda as he had been absconding despite a notice served upon him to join the investigation.

He said that the investigation was at a preliminary stage and custodial interrogation was necessary.

Seeking anticipatory bail for Kanda, Tulsi said that some other evidence was required to hold Kanda responsible for Geetika’s suicide.

“I may be fond of her, she may be fond of me but that does not mean I incite her to commit suicide,” Kanda’s counsel said.

“The reasons given by the trial court while dismissing anticipatory bail were that there was misuse of power by me, I have given preferential treatment to Geetika and I exploited her, but these are not offences under offence of abetment for commission of suicide,” Tulsi said.

Geetika, who worked in Kanda’s group, was found hanging from the ceiling of her house here on the night of Aug 4-5.

She left behind two suicide notes, blaming Kanda and Chaddha for her suicide.

Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea was dismissed Aug 9 by a sessions court that said allegations against him were grave and serious and his bail plea had no merit.

The former Haryana minister was booked for abetment to Geetika’s suicide and criminal intimidation. He is yet to appear before Delhi Police for questioning.

Kanda moves Delhi High Court for anticipatory bail

Absconding former Haryana minister Gopal Goyal Kanda, wanted in connection with the suicide of former flight attendant Geetika Sharma, Monday moved the Delhi High Court seeking anticipatory bail.

The matter will come up for hearing Tuesday.

On Aug 9, Kanda’s anticipatory bail plea was dismissed by a sessions court that said allegations against him were grave and serious in nature and that his application was without merit.

Kanda, who owned the MDLR Airlines where the 23-year-old Geetika was earlier employed, was booked for abetment to her suicide and criminal intimidation.

Kanda, former minister of state for home in Haryana, has been on the run since.

Geetika hanged herself in her north Delhi’s Ashok Vihar house Aug 5 and left behind a suicide note, blaming Kanda for her extreme step. Her autopsy report Friday confirmed there was no foul play.