New Delhi, Jun 10 (PTI) A Delhi court has granted bail to a customs official arrested last month by the CBI for allegedly taking bribe from a television screen importer, noting that the process of investigation was slow.
Special Judge Pulastya Pramachala granted the relief to Inspector Sandeep Rathi, posted at the Customs' Inland Container Depot, Tughlakabad, observing that the accused was not required for investigation purpose.
Rathi was arrested on May 18 in the case, along with superintendents Surendra Singh and Ajeet Kumar, also posted at the same office, during a trap operation, when they were allegedly receiving the first installment of Rs four lakh of a Rs 10 lakh bribe demanded by them.
While granting relief to the accused, the judge said “I find that process of investigation is slow and applicant is not required for investigation purpose. Manipulating the witness is a vague apprehension as IO (investigating officer) had the option to examine at least public witnesses immediately. “On such apprehension, applicant cannot be kept behind the bars for uncertain period,” the judge said in an order passed on June 8.
The accused was admitted to bail on furnishing personal bond and security bond in the sum of Rs 50,000 each, with one surety in the like amount.
The court directed the accused not to leave India without express permission of this court.
“Applicant shall not try to influence any witness of this case or the investigation in any manner. Applicant and his surety shall mention their mobile numbers in the bail bond to be used by them during the period of bail,” the judge directed.
According to the CBI, Siddarth Sharma of the Sonepat-based Adsun Electronics Private Limited had alleged that the accused officials had demanded a bribe of Rs 15 lakh for clearing a consignment of open cells (television screens) imported by his company and an additional amount of Rs 50,000 for every container cleared in the last four months.
On receiving the information, a trap was laid and the CBI teams raided the location and caught Singh red-handed, the officials said.
Subsequently, Kumar and Rathi were also taken into custody, they added.
During the searches at the residences of the accused, an amount of around Rs 11 lakh in cash was recovered from Singh, while Rs nine lakh were recovered from Kumar, the officials said. PTI UK RKS RKS