Rejecting the bail applications of former Karnataka minister and mining baron G. Janardhana Reddy and his brother-in-law Srinavasa Reddy, a special court Tuesday sent the duo to the custody of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) till Sep 19 in an illegal mining case.
The CBI court had reserved its orders Monday night after a marathon hearing on bail pleas of the accused and on a CBI petition for the their custody.
"The judge remanded them to the CBI custody and directed that they be produced before the court on Sep 19," CBI counsel T.V. Ramna told reporters.
Armed with the court warrant, a team of CBI officials led by Additional Superintendent of Police R.M. Khan later reached Chanchalguda Central Jail to take custody of the accused, even as the lawyers of the duo moved the high court against the order of the special court.
The CBI is likely to take the accused to the nearby state-run Dilkusha Guest House, which serves as its office. They will be questioned in a case of illegal mining in Andhra Pradesh's Anantapur district.
Judge Naga Murthy Sharma pronounced the order after hearing both the sides for three days. The hearing Friday and Monday lasted beyond court hours.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Vivek Kanka had told the court Monday that there is a lot the CBI wants to investigate by interrogating the accused.
Terming the illegal mining as a huge scam spread over Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, the ASG said it would not have taken place without connivance of the public servants from top to bottom.
"The CBI wants to find out the role played by public servants in granting permits for mining and transportation of iron ore and laying of roads in forest areas," he said.
A battery of defence lawyers headed by senior Supreme Court advocate Udai Lalit sought the bail for the accused on the ground that the CBI case against them was politically motivated, mala fide and vindictive.
Lalit is the special public prosecutor in the 2G scam case being heard in a special court in Delhi.
The CBI arrested Obulapuram Mining Company (OMC) director Janardhana and OMC managing director Srinivasa after raiding their houses Sep 5 in Karnataka's Bellary district.
The same day they were brought to Hyderabad and the CBI court remanded them to judicial custody till Sep 19.