Principal Judge A Pullaiah dismissed the agency's plea for 14 days' CBI remand of 39-year-old Jagan, MP from Kadapa, who was taken into custody last evening.
The court allowed the petition of Jagan seeking special prisoner status under Andhra Pradesh prison rules. He was later taken to the Chanchalguda central prison in the city amid tight security.
Seeking Jagan's remand, senior CBI counsel Ashok Bhan alleged that the YSR Congress chief had “sent (bribe amount) abroad and got it reinvested in his business through hawala racket.
“Jagan never cooperated in the investigation during the three-day questioning period in true sense,” the CBI counsel alleged.
“Jagan can no longer masquerade as a victim of CBI probe. He cannot assail the CBI for being victimised. He has hoodwinked the people of a huge sum of money. He cannot seek public sympathy. He has deprived poor people and caused them irreparable loss and in turn enriched himself by dubious mechanism by sending the funds abroad and getting the same invested in his companies,” the counsel alleged.
The CBI has charged him under Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 420 (cheating), 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 477A (falsification of accounts) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 13 of the Prevention of Corruption Act. The defence counsel contended that “the arrest (of Jagan) itself is illegal when his anticipatory bail plea was pending. It is abuse of law.
“It is an attempt to somehow stop him from campaigning (for the forthcoming bypolls in Andhra Pradesh). If a person complies with the notices and appears before the agency, they should not arrest him,” Jagan's counsel contended.
“Investments to the tune of Rs 1234 crore have been made in his (Jagan's) companies and he himself got enriched by Rs 300 crore. There are certain traces and he did not cooperate on the same,” Bhan alleged.
“It is a white collar crime committed by 74 accused, including Jagan, and so far charge sheets have been filed against 24 accused. All the accused in custody (industrialist N Prasad, senior bureaucrat K V Brahmananda Reddy) have revealed certain glaring facts about the case and we have to confront Jagan on the information provided,” the CBI counsel claimed.
CBI has sent Letters Rogatory to Mauritius and Luxembourg to get more information as there were alleged investments to the tune of several crores in Sandur Power by Jagan. “Luxembourg-based Asian Infra is suspected owner of Sandur Power,” the agency submitted.
There are similar transactions in the “exclusive knowledge” of Jagan which will be known only after getting his custody, the CBI counsel said “Jagan got enriched enormously in a short span of four years after influencing his father Rajashekhar Reddy, the then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh in getting ill gotten money into his own firms from investors who doled out favours as part of quid pro quo,” the counsel alleged.
“Some investing companies got allotted thousands of acres of agriculture land in turn of investments after Jagan influenced his father,” the agency further alleged. Further investigations need to be carried out on the role of Jagan with regard to the influence made on his father, the agency said.
The defence counsel argued that since the FIR was lodged in August last year, Jagan has neither interfered nor threatened any witnesses and therefore should not be remanded in custody.
After the court order, Jagan's mother and YSR Congress honorary president Y S Vijaya broke her fast to lead the party's campaign for the June 12 by-elections in the state following a request by the Central Governing Council of the party that met here this afternoon.
Meanwhile, a bandh call given by the YSR Congress in protest against the arrest evoked a mixed response in the state even as police clamped prohibitory orders in the city to prevent any untoward incident.
Vijaya, an MLA, broke her fast launched last night in protest against the arrest of Jagan by the CBI in the disproportionate assets case.
The CGC requested Vijaya, widow of late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, to carry the mantle forward in the absence of her son.
The MLA became emotional on hearing news that Jagan had been sent to judicial remand for 14 days.
Later, YSRC candidate from Parakal, Konda Surekha, offered lemon juice to Vijaya to end the fast.
Other leaders of the party offered juice to Jagan's wife Bharati and sister Sharmila who too sat on fast with Vijaya. YSRC sources said a detailed tour programme of their honorary president was being worked out and she might hit the campaign trail in a day or two beginning from Nellore.