HC protects Setalvad from arrest till May 2

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Thursday ordered no arrests of social activists Teesta Setalvad and her associate Javed Anand till May 2 in a criminal case lodged against them by the Gujarat police for alleged misappropriation of funds. A Bench of Justice Revati Mohite-Dere gave an interim protection to the from arrest till May 2 on their plea for “tarnsit anticipatory bail,’ filed yesterday. While allowing their plea, the bench asked them to appear before the probe agency tomorrow for recording their statements and later, as and when required. The Ahmedabad Crime Branch had last week lodged a complaint against Setalvad and Anand, alleging that through their NGO Sabrang Trust, they had ‘fraudulently’ secured central government funds to the tune of Rs 1.4 crore between 2008 and 2013. According to the complaint on the basis of which the case was lodged, the funds had been secured to provide education to poor children in Gujarat and Maharashtra and to help victims of the 2002 post- Godhra riots in Gujarat, but were misappropriated or used for other purposes. The case was registered against Setalvad and Anand under various sections, including 403 (dishonest misappropriation of property), 406 (criminal breach of trust), and 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant, or by banker, merchant or agent) of the Indian Penal Code.