The Ministry of Home Affairs on Wednesday informed the Delhi High Court that the Delhi Police will question cricket bookie Sanjeev Chawla inside Tihar Jail. Sanjeev Chawla is a key accused in the 2000 match-fixing and betting case involving late South African captain Hansie Cronje. After being extradited from the United Kingdom to India on February 13, Chawla was taken to the crime branch office at RK Puram where he was questioned for several hours and then taken to Safdarjung Hospital for a medical check-up before finally being produced before the Patiala House Court.
On the previous date of hearing, the High Court providing interim relief to Chawla had directed that he be kept in Tihar Jail until further orders. Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain appearing for the Ministry of Home Affairs said that the centrepiece of the assurance given to UK government that he will be kept in Tihar will not be violated.
In the last two months, a Delhi Police Crime Branch team attended several court hearings in the extradition case. Chawla moved to the UK as soon as the FIR was registered in the first week of March 2000. He had gone there for the first time on a business visa in 1996, but his Indian passport was revoked in 2000, and he obtained a British passport in 2005.
Solicitor General Sanjay Jain said that Chawla will be confronted and investigated in Tihar and further said that if he is to be confronted with anyone outside Delhi, it would be through video conferencing. Furthermore, Jain added that if Chawla has to be taken anywhere, it will have to seek permission by a court.
The submissions came while the court was hearing a plea filed by Chawla through senior advocate Vikas Pahwa challenging his 12-day police remand pronounced by a Delhi court a day earlier. Arguing for Chawla, Pahwa stated that the request of extradition sent by the Indian government clearly suggests that the investigation has attained finality and the accused's presence is only required for the trial.