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SC seeks govt response to Sahara chief’s plea for Tihar guest house

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The Supreme Court on Friday sought the response of the Delhi government on a petition filed by Sahara chief Subrata Roy seeking permission to be shifted from his Tihar prison cell to a jail guesthouse to enable him to hold negotiations with buyers for his assets in India and abroad.

A three-judge Bench of Justices T.S. Thakur, Anil R. Dave and A.K. Sikri issued the notice after hearing senior counsel K.T.S. Tulsi appearing for Mr. Roy and Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar for the Delhi government. Mr. Roy has been in jail since March 4 along with two senior Sahara officials, Ashok Roy Chaudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey.

Mr. Tulsi submitted that the petitioner was keen on implementing the order to deposit Rs. 10,000 crore with the Securities and Exchange Board of India to secure his release. Counsel said to maintain confidentiality of the buyers, it would be desirable if the negotiations were held in the guesthouse inside Tihar jail. He said the prospective buyers wanted Mr. Roy to be present during the negotiations and did not want to be quoted in the media.

“Not small sales”
Mr. Justice Thakur told the Solicitor-General, “We want to give Sahara chief an opportunity to negotiate as these properties worth crores of rupees are not small sales. We want you to come out with various options without affecting the security and making this order as a precedent. It is not to make them more comfortable than what they deserve.”

The Bench posted the matter for further hearing on July 30.

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