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A CBI court on Tuesday granted bail to Manoj Prasad, an alleged businessman arrested in the bribery case involving the CBI special director Rakesh Asthana.

Granting bail, judge Santosh Snehi Mann saying that no purpose will be served by keeping him in further custody. Prasad, arrested on October 17, is currently in judicial custody. The court had on November 3 denied bail to Prasad, saying it was not a fit stage to grant him relief.

On October 31, it had granted bail to co-accused and CBI DSP Devender Kumar after the agency did not oppose his bail petition. The agency had registered an FIR against Asthana and others on a written complaint of businessman Sathish Sana on October 15. Besides Asthana, Prasad and Kumar, another alleged middleman Somesh Prasad has also been named as an accused in the case.

The FIR had alleged that Kumar, then Investigating Officer (IO) in the case against meat exporter Moin Qureshi, repeatedly called the complainant to the CBI office to harass and compel him to pay a bribe of Rs 5 crore for getting a clean chit in the case. The complaint had also alleged that a part of the bribe was paid by Sana.

—India Legal Bureau

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