Former Union telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran will not go to jail for some time now. The Supreme Court has restrained the CBI from arresting Maran till further orders, in a case related to alleged installation of telephone exchange at his residence. In its order the SC stayed Maran’s arrest till September 14 and also issued a notice to the CBI. “Why is the CBI so keen to arrest Maran for loss of Rs 1 crore to the government, when it has not arrested people in Rs 8000 crore health scam,” the SC bench asked. Dayanidhi Maran had moved the Supreme Court challenging the Madras high court’s decision to cancel his bail and asking him to surrender in the case.
It may be noted that the Madras high court had cancelled Maran’s interim anticipatory bail in the controversial telephone exchange case and directed him to surrender before the CBI within three days while rejecting his charges of political vendetta.
The high court held that “prima facie” Maran had “misused” his office by obtaining telephone connections “illegally” and allegations against him were backed by material.
CBI has registered an FIR against Maran and others alleging that more than 300 high-speed telephone lines were provided at his residence here and extended to his brother Kalanithi Maran’s SUN TV channel to enable its uplinking when Dayanidhi Maran was Telecom Minister from 2004-07.
Apprehending arrest in the case, Maran had moved the court and Justice R Subbiah had on June 30 granted him anticipatory bail for six weeks subject to the condition that he appears before CBI on July 1 and cooperates in the investigation.
CBI later moved the high court seeking cancellation of the anticipatory bail on the ground that he was not cooperating with the investigation. The high court rejected Maran’s contention that CBI was seeking cancellation of his interim bail only to humiliate him.
The court noted that FIR was registered against Maran in 2013 and that had the agency wanted to arrest him it could have done so when he had appeared before it in January and October 2014 when there was no bail protection.