SC considering PC's plea will set a bad precedent: CBI

Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram after being produced at Rouse Avenue Court in connection with INX media case, in New Delhi, Tuesday. PTI photo

The CBI has told the Supreme Court that examining a plea by former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram against his custody remand issued by a trial court in exercise of its jurisdiction would set a very bad precedent, as there was “no extra-ordinary and grave circumstances, which could justify by-passing of statutory remedies” available to a citizen.

It maintained that his petition was “bereft of any merit” and warranted no interference by the top court.

The CBI said the fundamental basis for approaching the Supreme Court directly in the matter did not exist as the top court had on August 26 dismissed his plea against the Delhi High Court's judgement of August 20 that rejected his anticipatory bail, since he was arrested on August 21 in the INX media case.

“Entertaining of a petition under Article 136 of the Constitution directly against an order of remand passed by the competent court in exercise of its discretionary jurisdiction under Section 167 of the Criminal Procedure Code would set a very bad precedent,” the CBI said in its affidavit.

The investigating agency said the petitioner has not pointed out that any extra ordinary circumstances which would have justified any deviation from the consistent practice being followed.

It said there were two subsequent orders passed after the first order on August 21 by which the Special CBI judge had “exercised his sound judicial discretion in the interest of investigation” to extend custodial interrogation of Chidambaram.

“Normally, such orders are not interfered with even by the High Courts, more particularly when the Special Court has, after an elaborate and lengthy hearing, passed a detailed speaking order in exercise of judicial discretion,” it said.

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