The Bombay high court on Thursday adjourned till July 18 the hearing on the bail plea of former media baron Peter Mukerjea, an accused in the Sheena Bora murder case.
The court also turned down his lawyer’s request for an early date. The counsel had sought that the CBI be directed to “begin arguments at the earliest since Mukerjea has been behind bars for over seven months”.
Justice Revati Mohite-Dere adjourned the hearing after the CBI sought additional time to file a reply to Mukerjea’s bail plea.
Though the judge observed that since the “chargesheet had already been filled in the case, the CBI should argue based on the contents of the chargesheet”. She, however, granted the CBI a last chance to get its reply in order.
Mukerjea had approached the HC after the sessions court rejected his bail plea on two previous occasions.
In his plea before HC, Mukerjea challenged the lower court’s decision to refuse him bail on the ground that the CBI was yet to complete its probe. He claimed that the CBI has already filed a charge sheet in the case and the trial court should not have denied him bail merely based on agency claims that the investigation was incomplete.
Mukerjea through his lawyer also said that there is no evidence against him and he has been kept in prolonged custody on mere suspicion. He said that he had “no motive” to kill Sheena and that the CBI case against him was “false and baseless”.
He was arrested by the CBI in November last year.
On May 23 this year, the sessions rejected his second bail plea and refused to look into the evidence against him, saying that it would do so only at the stage of trial.