2G scam: Kanimozhi back in court

Kanimozhi, the daughter of Tamil Nadu ex-CM M Karunanidhi, spent a quiet night in Tihar Jail’s prison number 6 after being arrested in the 2G scam.

Updated: May 21, 2011, 13:52 PM IST

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: DMK MP MK Kanimozhi, the daughter of former Tamil Nadu chief minister M Karunanidhi, spent a quiet night in Tihar Jail’s prison number 6 after being arrested in the 2G scam case.

A special CBI court had on Friday refused to grant bail to Kanimozhi and Kalaignar TV managing director Sharad Kumar citing the ‘magnitude of the crime’.

Jail officials said no five-star treatment was given to both Kanimozhi and Kumar.

While Kanimozhi was lodged in Jail No 6, Kumar was sent to Jail No 4 which also has Commonwealth Games scam accused Suresh Kalmadi.

Madhuri Gupta, former official at Indian High Commission in Islamabad who was arrested on charges of spying, pimp Sonu Punjaban and MCD councilor Sharda Jain are Kanimozhi’s immediate neighbours at Tihar.

Both Kanimozhi and Kumar were back in the CBI court today as the case came up for hearing.

Addressing a packed courtroom at the Patiala House premises, CBI Special Judge OP Saini had yesterday said: “Considering the magnitude of the crime, nature and enormity of the allegation, character of evidence on record and the apprehension that the witnesses may be influenced in case the accused are released on bail, I have no hesitation in holding that both accused have failed to make out prima facie case for bail.”

Kanimozhi, 43, who was accompanied in court by her husband Aravindan, tried to regain her composure after the judgment was pronounced and later told her supporters, “I was expecting the decision.”

There was shock as the ruling was read out. Her colleagues in the DMK and security guards held each other tearfully as she was taken into the lock-up in the Patiala House court premises.

Co-accused — and former communications minister — A Raja also looked stunned. The DMK MP is already in jail in connection with the case, related to irregularities in the allocation of airwaves to telecom companies that caused huge losses to the exchequer. Fourteen people, including several corporate leaders, have been charged in the case.

The court had allowed Kanimozhi to carry her medicines, books and reading glasses to Tihar Jail. It even allowed her home food and a cell with an attached bathroom, but declined her plea to continue wearing her nose pin while in jail.

RN Sharma, Deputy Inspector General, Prisons, had said there would no VIP treatment for Kanimozhi, who is used to comforts of high life.

“She has been given a separate cell with attached toilet, the cell has television, fans and light. As far as food is concerned she can have South Indian food. This is not a special allowance as such because we give many other jail inmates South Indian food like idli, vada and sambar,” Sharma said.

The CBI had named Kanimozhi and Sharad Kumar as co-conspirators in its April 25 supplementary chargesheet after it traced an illegal money trail of Rs 214 crore in the scam.

The court verdict, exactly a week after the DMK was routed in the Tamil Nadu polls, could not have come at a worse time.

Many political analysts said this is a ‘litmus test’ for the party.

The DMK, amid fresh strains with its key ally Congress, is holding a crucial meeting in Chennai today to chalk out its plan for the future.

The DMK top brass is expected to discuss ways to handle the new situation arising out of CBI naming Kanimozhi as co-conspirator in the scam, taking it to the doors of DMK`s first family for the first time.