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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday has informed Patiala House Court that British middleman Christian Michel, who was allegedly involved in the AgustaWestland VVIP Chopper deal scam, has taken the name of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and also revealed that he was in touch with her.
The ED counsel this in the Court while seeking the 8 days custody of the Christian Michel which came to an end on Saturday.
The ED counsel claimed that during the course of interrogation, Michel revealed Mrs Gandhi's name.However, the counsel did not cleared that who is this Mrs Gandhi and what was the context in which Michel was in touch with her.
The reference, though, was made in what context is not yet clear. He made a reference to "Mrs Gandhi". ED also said that he had conversed in codes.
It is learnt that ED said that Michel had passed on the information about this interrogation through a chit he had passed to his lawyer.
Moreover, ED has sought the court to ban Michel from meeting his lawyers as it alleged that the suspect was being “tutored” by his lawyers under influence from "outside".
The ED has also sought eight days more custody of Michel for further interrogation and to delve into such phrases as "…son of Italian lady…he will become the next PM of India…".
According to media report, the ED also said the court that they needed this time to find the identities of the officials he met in India, the places that he visited and where he met other accomplices. The ED also wants to establish the money trail beyond doubt.
On December 22, Michel was sent to seven days’ police custody. Earlier, Michel appeared in the court in Delhi on Saturday to plead for bail even as the CBI opposed the plea of SP Tyagi who had requested the court to allow them to travel abroad.
The court has reserved its order on SP Tyagi until January 24.
Michel had appealed to the court also for moving him to a different jail or a different cell in the jail as other inmates were allegedly harassing him with questions pertaining to the alleged scandal in the VVIP helicopter deal. To that, the court directed the jail superintendent to take care of Michel’s security.
A day after Michel’s extradition, the court had granted the CBI a five-day custodial interrogation of Michel. This was extended by five more days subsequently, and then for four more days.
The court had reserved the order on Michel's bail plea until December 19.
Michel’s judicial custody will last till December 28, subject to further orders by the court.