The Delhi High Court has sought the responses of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Christian Michel on a plea filed by Tihar authorities challenging a trial court order that allowed him to make international phone calls in violation of prison rules. A Bench of Justice Mukta Gupta issued a notice to Michel and the CBI seeking their reply on the plea.
The trial court in January this year had allowed the alleged middleman in the VVIP Chopper Scam, Christian Michel to make international phone calls to his family, friends and lawyers for 15 minutes a week. Advocate Avi Singh, appearing for Tihar jail, argued that the prison manual provided only for 10 minutes of call per week. He said that as per January 27, 2017 circular of prison authorities, a foreign national is allowed to make calls to the country of his or her origin only. Michel has mostly been contacting his legal representatives in Italy while his country of origin is the UK.
The Tihar authorities had alleged in the plea that no facts and circumstances were considered by the trial court for granting an illegal and improper privilege of communication. The High Court has fixed the next hearing in the matter on April 22.
Earlier the court had imposed restrictions on Michel’s meetings with his lawyer during his custody with the ED after the ED said that Michel was misusing the legal access by passing chits to his lawyers asking them how to tackle questions on “Mrs Gandhi“.