New Delhi: Zee Group chairman Subhash Chandra and his son were on Thursday granted interim protection from arrest by a Delhi court till 14 December in the case of an alleged Rs.100-crore extortion bid from Naveen Jindal’s firm by two editors of his news channel. Additional sessions judge Raj Rani Mitra said that on 14 December, it will be decided whether their interim protection can be extended or not.
The judge passed the order after hearing arguments on the anticipatory bail plea of Chandra and his son Punit Goenka, in which their counsel pressed for interim protection from arrest for joining the investigation. They have been asked to appear before the Delhi Police on 8 December.
During the day’s hearing, senior advocate Geeta Luthra and Vijay Aggarwal, appearing for the father and son, had contended that their clients are ready to join the probe, if the police gives them the assurance that the two will not be arrested during the time of interrogation.
“We (Chandra and Goenka) will join the investigation as has been asked by the police for 8 December and even before, if required. But, if the police decides to arrest us, then it should give at least five days so that we can argue the matter at length on some other day,” the counsel argued.
They had also said that their clients should be granted protection so that they can join the probe without fear of arrest. Special public prosecutor Rajiv Mohan, however, had opposed their plea saying, “We cannot commit or assure that they (Chandra and his son) will not be arrested. The moment we get a lead of the alleged extortion made on behalf of Zee Group by their two editors, we will arrest them.”