A CBI court in Srinagar on Tuesday deferred till July 7 hearing on the bail applications of five persons arrested in the sex racket case providing time to the petitioners as well as the investigating agency to engage counsels for representing them.
The court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, which is also the designated CBI court, deferred till Friday hearing on the bail application filed by BSF DIG KS Padhi, Deputy Superintendent of Police Mohammad Ashraf Mir, IAS officer MI Khanday, Mehrajuddin Malik and Shabir Ahmad Langu.
The application of former minister and sitting MLA Ghulam Ahmad Mir was listed for hearing on July 8 as his counsels submitted that they would not be able to appear on Friday.
The CBI officer present in the court pleaded that the agency be given more time to engage a counsel from Delhi to plead its case.
Khanday's son, who had moved the bail application for his father, told the court that CBI was "playing a joke" by not having its counsel ready in the court despite knowing in advance that the applications would come up for hearing on Tuesday.
"CBI is using delaying tacticd by not bringing a counsel. It is we who are facing difficulty in getting services of a counsel. CBI can engage as many as they want," he sbmitted. The judge said his argument had substance.
On the application of the accused seeking court's help in providing counsels for defending them, the judge said a panel was presented to the petitioners but they did not consent to the appointment of any of them.