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Sahara chief Subrata Roy surrenders, arrested

Posted on Feb 28 2014 | IANS

Lucknow, Feb 28 : Sahara India chief Subrata Roy surrendered before police here Friday, a day after they failed to trace him to execute a Supreme Court warrant for his arrest. He was arrested and sent to police custody at a guest house till March 4.

The Supreme Court earlier Friday declined to revoke the arrest warrant.

Roy was scheduled to address a press conference at a hotel in New Delhi, but Sahara officials told police that he was willing to give himself up. He then surrendered and was arrested.

Sources said that soon after his surrender, Delhi Police sought his transit remand.

Chief Judicial Magistrate Anand Kumar later said Roy will be kept in police custody till the apex court hearing March 4.

Roy was late Friday sent to a forest department guest house at the Kukrail picnic spot near Lucknow, where he will spend the next three days in police custody.

The Sahara chief walked into the court around 5.30 p.m., and his counsel V.K. Shahi said Roy was a law-abiding citizen and was not running away from the court.

The chief judicial magistrate, however, left it to the discretion of police to decide whether to keep Roy in his bungalow or somewhere else.

The surrender came soon after Roy released a statement to the media, saying he was not absconding.

"I am not that human being who will abscond. In fact, being a law-abiding citizen, I shall hate myself to do any such thing ever in my life," he said.

Roy had Thursday informed the court that his non-appearance was neither intentional nor deliberate.

The apex court Feb 26 had issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Roy for failing to appear before it in person as directed by the court. In its order Friday, it declined to revoke the warrant.

Roy had said he was absent since he wanted to be with his ailing mother, who is 92.

"Last evening, I had gone out of Sahara Shaher, Lucknow, to consult with a panel of doctors with certain medical reports of my mother and then I had gone to a lawyers' house also," he said in the statement Friday.

"I was informed by my family members that police had come and they said something to the media and then the whole media in the country started saying I am absconding," he said, adding: "Am I absconding? I have started hating myself."

He said a lot of people advised him to get himself admitted to some hospital and could remain there, as was the "general practice to avoid courts" on for medical reasons. "However, I hate to do such drama."

The Supreme Court had directed the presence of Roy and the three directors of his group firms following their failure to submit to the market regulator title deeds of some of the unencumbered properties. The directors had since surrendered.

The court order was to secure the balance of Rs.19,000 crore out of Rs.24,000 crore that these firms had collected through optionally fully-convertible debentures. These Sahara companies had deposited Rs.5,120 crore with the regulator in December 2012.

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