Hyderabad, June 7 (IANS) The Andhra Pradesh High Court Thursday dismissed a CBI plea seeking custody of jailed parliamentarian Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy for three more days to question him in an illegal assets case. The court asked the agency to move a petition Friday.
Jagan's five-day Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) custody ended Thursday with officials grilling him about investments, primarily in the cement companies for the fifth consecutive day.
The CBI officials picked up the Kadapa parliamentarian from Chanchalguda Jail and questioned him for over six hours at the CBI office in Koti.
Meanwhile, the high court also adjourned hearing on Jagan's petition seeking permission to speak to media. The YSR Congress party leader wanted an opportunity to speak to media in view of June 12 by-elections to one Lok Sabha and 18 assembly seats in the state.
The court, while directing the CBI to file a counter, adjourned the hearing to June 21. It means Jagan would get no opportunity to address the voters through media as the campaigning for by-elections will come to an end June 10.
In another development in the case, Information Technology Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah appeared before the CBI. He was being questioned regarding to orders issued by him allocating water to some cement companies which made investment into Jagan's businesses.
Lakshmaiah had issued the orders as major irrigation minister in the cabinet of Jagan's father Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy.
Meanwhile, a CBI court Thursday extended the judicial custody of former minister Mopidevi Venkataramana till June 21.
As Venkataramana's 14-day judicial custody ends Thursday, he was produced before the CBI court. The agency sought extension of his custody on the ground that investigations were on in the case.
Venkataramana, who was excise minister at the time of his arrest last month, was minister for investment and infrastructure in late YSR's cabinet.
The CBI believes he issued orders in violation of rules, allocating land and extending other concessions to Vanpic company, whose promoter Nimmagadda Prasad had invested in Jagan's firms.
Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy, who was also questioned by the CBI in the case, Thursday called on Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy amid speculation that the central agency may arrest her.
Sabita as the mining minister in YSR cabinet had issued licenses to some cement companies which invested in Jagan's businesses.
She is one of the six ministers who were issued notice by the Supreme Court, asking them why their role in issuing 26 controversial orders should not be probed.