New Delhi: DMK Rajya Sabha MP Kanimozhi has been arrested and sent to Tihar Jail today. The Delhi court hearing the 2G case rejected her bail application and ordered her immediate arrest on Friday afternoon.
The bail plea of Kalaignar TV Managing Director Sharath Kumar was also rejected by Special CBI Judge O P Saini and he too has been taken to jail.
Justice Saini said bail had been dismissed due to the magnitude of the crime and said given the seriousness of the allegations, he was unable to show any consideration to her being a woman. Kanimozhi's lawyer had argued that she should be given reprieve on the grounds that she was a woman and mother to a young child. Bail has not been granted to any of the accused in the case.
Kanimozhi, who is the daughter of DMK chief M Karunanidhi, has been named as co-accused and has been chargesheeted by the CBI for allegedly accepting a Rs 214-crore bribe that was a part of India's largest swindle, the 2G scam. Her party MP and Dalit leader A Raja has been in Tihar since February, for allegedly planning and executing the 2G scam when he was Telecom Minister in 2008. (Read: Who is Kanimozhi?)
Kanimozhi and Kumar hold 20 per cent stake each in Kalaignar TV, while former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi's wife and Kanimozhi's step mother Dayalu Ammal holds 60 per cent share. (Watch: 'Kanimozhi belongs in jail', says Subramanian Swamy)
A CBI lawyer said the court had ordered that Kanimozhi and Sharath Kumar be produced in court tomorrow.
Order on their bail plea had been deferred repeatedly. The last hearing on May 14 was a day after the results of the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections were announced. The DMK, which ruled the state for the last five years, got a severe drubbing. It's thus come as a double blow to the DMK and Karunanidhi - Kanimozhi is largely believed to be his favourite child. (Watch: Sad about Kanimozhi's arrest, says Karunanidhi)
Kanimozhi had appeared before the court for the first time on May 6 complying with the summons issued to her after the second chargesheet filed by the CBI named her as an accused in the case. She was directed by the court to be personally present till her bail was decided upon. Kanimozhi was earlier granted exemption for May 12 and 13 as she and Sharath Kumar were to appear before the Income Tax office in Chennai.
In court, noted lawyer Ram Jethmalani argued for Kanimozhi and blamed Raja for the wrongs attributed to her - he said she had neither signed any documents nor handled affairs of the television company.
Kanimozhi had on one occasion remarked that "my misfortune is that I am Karunanidhi's daughter and an MP. I have 20 per cent shares in Kalaignar TV. Show me one overt act of mine which relates to the offence."
The CBI, on the other hand, opposed her bail saying her "complicity" in the alleged bribe given to Kalaignar TV in the 2G scam is clear. "The transactions are nothing but the transfer of bribe money to Kalaignar TV. Kumar (MD of the channel) alone cannot be held responsible when a family is having the controlling shares," Special Public Prosecutor UU Lalit had said.
(With PTI inputs)