SC adjourns hearing on CBI’s plea against interim bail to Chanda Kochhar

'Interim order which has been challenged before the SC has been confirmed by the Bombay HC,' submitted Kochhars’ lawyer.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned till February 12 the hearing on the CBI’s petition challenging interim bail granted by the Bombay High Court to former ICICI Bank chief Chanda Kochhar in the alleged Videocon loan fraud case.

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At the very outset, a Bench presided over by Justice Bela M Trivedi was apprised by the counsel appearing for the Kochhar couple that the appeal filed by CBI had become infructuous as the Bombay High Court on Tuesday confirmed its 2023 interim bail order.

“The interim order which has been challenged before the Supreme Court has been confirmed by the Bombay High Court,” submitted Kochhars’ lawyer.

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In response, the central investigative agency sought a period of one week for verification of the order passed by the High Court.

After hearing the submissions, the Bench, also comprising Justice Pankaj Mithal, proceeded to pass the following order: “As per the status report available on the website of the Bombay High Court, the petitions (filed by Kochhar and her husband) have been disposed of. The counsel for the petitioner (CBI) seeks time to verify. List on Monday.”

In a decision pronounced on February 6, a Division Bench of Justices Anuja Prabhudessai and Nitin R. Borkar of the Bombay High Court confirmed the interim bail order passed in January last year.

Against the interim decision of the High Court directing release of Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar from judicial custody on the grounds that the arrest made was not in accordance with the law, the CBI had moved the Supreme Court with a Special Leave Petition.

In a hearing, the top court had raised eyebrows over continuation of Kochhars’ interim bail despite the order of the High Court directing interim release of the duo only for a term of two weeks.

“Is interim bail still continuing? Why are you not objecting?” it had asked the CBI.

Chanda Kochhar and her businessman husband Deepak Kochhar are alleged to have received kickbacks over her tenure in lieu of loans provided to the Videocon group.

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