Home ministry official held on graft charge gets bail

New Delhi, June 7 (IANS) A court here on Tuesday granted bail to suspended Home Ministry undersecretary Anand Joshi in a graft case, but warned him of bail cancellation if any of the conditions imposed by it was violated.

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Special Judge Vinod Kumar granted bail to Joshi on furnishing a personal bond of Rs 50,000 and two sureties of the like amount.

“I have considered all facts and circumstances. I agree with senior public prosecutor to the extent that the accusations, in the present matter, are very serious, but at the same time the applicant (Joshi) cannot be kept in jail for an indefinite period, especially in view of the fact that he appears to have roots in society and has a family to support,” the court said.

The court imposed seven conditions for bail, warning Joshi that “violation of the conditions shall result in immediate cancellation of bail”.

The conditions include the one that he cannot use any other mobile phone for communication during investigation in the case.

The court directed Joshi to give his and his family members’ phone numbers to the case investigating officer and that he would not leave Delhi and Ghaziabad without the CBI’s permission.

The court asked the accused to mark his presence with the investigating officer every Monday, join the probe whenever required and submit his passport to authorities.

The court directed him not to try to tamper with evidence, influence witnesses or contact any NGO under investigation.

Joshi, Undersecretary in the Home Ministry when he was suspended, was arrested by the CBI on May 15 here on the charge of “obtaining illegal gratification” from various non-governmental organisations after issuing notices to them under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

The CBI is reported to have found files relating to activist Teesta Setalvad’s NGO Sabrang Trust in his possession.

Joshi went “missing” from his residence in Ghaziabad, Delhi’s suburban town in Uttar Pradesh, after summons were issued to him by the CBI.

Earlier, home ministry sources said Joshi, posted in the Foreigners Division, had access to files related to the FCRA and was under the scanner for several months.

Joshi denied the charge of receiving bribes from the NGOs.



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