Hyderabad : A local court on Saturday granted police custody of Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited (DCHL) promoters, who were arrested in the alleged loan fraud case on February 14, to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for five days beginning Monday.
The CBI named DCHL Chairman T Venkattram Reddy and Managing Director T Vinayaka Ravi Reddy as A1 and A2 in the case filed in July 2013 on a complaint by Canara Bank.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Y V Raju, however, refused the investigating agency’s request for taking the accused to Bengaluru for interrogation.
The magistrate has directed the CBI to conduct the interrogation at the local CBI office in Sulatan Bazar, between 10 am and 5 pm everyday before handing them over to the jail authorities by 6 pm, where they have been kept under judicial custody.
The magistrate has also asked the investigating officers to conduct the interrogation of the accused in the presence of their lawyers.
On Thursday, the magistrate had reserved the orders in the custody petition after hearing the arguments of both the sides.
The CBI had asked for 14-day custody for interrogation, while alleging that the accused were not cooperating with the ongoing investigation. The counsel of the accused, however, pleaded against the police custody besides opposing the investigating agency’s move to shift them to Bengaluru in the event of police custody.
In his orders, Raju directed the CBI to produce both the accused before the court at 4 pm on February 27 evening upon the conclusion of the police custody.
The CBI alleged that the accused were resorted to cheating and forgery in availing of Rs 358 crore-loan from the bank. As the promoters failed to repay the loan, the bank had first initiated the legal proceedings before filing a criminal complaint with CBI in March, 2013. The company, which runs Deccan Chronicle English daily among other publications, had defaulted on payment of more than Rs 4,000 crore to more than two dozen banks.