A Delhi court will hear today, the bail application of Restaurateur Navneet Kalra in a case related to black-marketing of Oxygen Concentrator and other medical equipment during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Justice Subramonium Prasad had adjourned the bail application of Kalra on Thursday.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi represented Kalra, while Additional Solicitor General SV Raju represented Delhi Police.
Singhvi- “This is a classic. A case, where this person is made accused by media, my first point, I’m neither an importer nor an manufacturer. I happened to be a businessman, I have full roots in society.
“I have done business in simply buying oxygen Concentrators with the GST payments, more than that openly and frequently helping people. I have done no hoarding and there is no under Essential Commodities Act, Section 3.
Singhvi- “I have purchased most of these from Matrix cellular under invoices.
Justice Prasad- How many Concentrators were found? 9 at Town Hall, 96 at khan Chacha restaurant. If you say you are neither a importer nor a manufacturer, under what capacity you have 105 Concentrators?
“Do you have capacity to hold these under Drugs and Commodities Act? Notification makes them as drugs\. Then drugs can be stored and sold under licenses only. If that is so, the punishment is 10 years.
Singhvi- Milords this has not been the focus of the prosecution. Justice Prasad- You can also probably be brought in the drugs and cosmetics act, the punishment is 10 years..
The media of this country is after his blood, I should not be considered a fleeting criminal all over the place. Police will be prosecuted by the press if I’m not arrested that is the amount of pressure, that is why I’m here for the anticipatory bail.
ASG Raju- What Oxygen Concentrators do, they take air from the environment and oxygen is increased and then fed through the pipe. We have tested 2 of these Concentrators, it is Chinese third grade Concentrators.
ASG Raju- These so called oxygen Concentrators, we were shocked that these machines are not the machines that can be said to be a oxygen Concentrators.
ASG Raju- The percent fixed by WTO of 82 is not being met, we are still to investigate and find out the persons who bought these machines and died. That part of investigation is still pending. They have sold thousands and if we find even one case it can be of 302, or culpable homicide.
ASG Raju- What is required Milord is not only the gravity of the offence the society must also be taken into consideration, if this anticipatory bail is granted it will send wrong signal to all the black marketers, that over some technicalities we can get bail
Earlier in the day, Saket District Court ASJ Sandeep Garg had dismissed the anticipatory bail application of Kalra.
The Court had reserved its order on the Pre-Arrest bail application filed yesterday after hearing arguments from the accused through his Counsels Senior Advocate Vikas Pahwa and Advocate Vineet Malhotra, and State Public Prosecutor Atul Shrivastava.
The Restaurateur filed the anticipatory bail application after an FIR was registered under the Essential Commodities Act and various other Sections, including 420/188/120B and 34 of the Indian Penal Code for black-marketing and hoarding of Oxygen Concentrator, Oximeters, N95 marks and other Equipment.
Delhi Police had raided the popular Khan Chacha Restaurant in Khan Market and one other Restaurant in Lodhi Colony, both owned by Kalra on May 7 and recovered around hundred oxygen concentrators.