Paradip Port bribery case: Court rejects bail plea of Mahima Mishra’s son Charchit

Bhubaneswar: The CBI court here today rejected the bail plea of Charchit Mishra, son of industrialist Mahima Mishra and Director of Orissa Stevedores Limited (OSL), in the Paradip Port Trust bribery case.

The court also dismissed the bail application of accused Debapriya Mohanty. It, however, granted bail to builder Sisir Dash, who is an accused in the case.

The court also rejected the central agency’s plea to take the accused on further remand for nine days.

The CBI had earlier arrested seven persons in the case. All of them were today produced before the court by the agency.

“The CBI today sought remand for nine days and permission for voice sample recording. We opposed the two pleas and they were rejected by the court. Hearing the bail pleas, the court granted bail to Sisir Dash only and rejected the application of Charchit and Debapriya. After getting the order copy, we will decide whether to move the High Court for bail or to re-apply for bail before the CBI court,” Charchit’s counsel Jayadip Pal.

The CBI had on August 4 raided office and residence of Mahima Mishra on allegations of bribery. The searches were also conducted at office of Orissa Stevedores Limited (OSL) in Badapadia locality of Paradip town in the case. The sleuths recovered Rs 84.5 lakh during searches at various locations in Cuttack and Paradip.

As per the CBI, a case was registered against Chief Mechanical Engineer, Paradip Port Trust, and others including private persons, private company and unknown others. It was alleged that the Chief Mechanical Engineer (CME), Paradip Port Trust was in the habit of demanding and accepting bribes through his close conduit for extending undue benefits to various private stakeholders engaged in port service and activities at Paradip Port.

The said conduit of CME was in close contact with Manager Port Operations (also allegedly acting as a middleman with other Cargo companies) of a private group of companies and other persons. It was further alleged that while unloading cargo, a private company based at Cuttack, damaged the conveyor belt operational in Paradip Port. The cost of repairing / replacement of the conveyor belt was very high. The said CME in conspiracy with conduit, middleman and Director of said private company got it repaired at the cost of Port Trust causing huge monetary advantage to said private company, the CBI said in a press release.

In turn, the conduit allegedly demanded Rs. 60 lakh as bribe for the said favour, allegedly on behalf of CME. Accordingly, he collected the bribe amount of Rs. 25 lakh from Cuttack and kept Rs. 10 lakh separately for themselves. It was also alleged that the conduit handed over Rs. 10 lakh to a real estate developer in Bhubaneshwar, with whom the Chief Mechanical Engineer had allegedly booked a property, it added.

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