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No bail for lawyer Janhavi Gadkar in accident case

PTI 26 Jun 2015, 23:50:12 PM IST

Mumbai:  A magistrate's court here today refused bail to Janhavi Gadkar, the corporate lawyer accused of ramming her car into a taxi while driving under the influence of alcohol and causing the death of two persons.

"The application is rejected," said judge Richa Khedkar while extending Gadkar's judicial custody till July 10. The magistrate noted that some of the witnesses were Gadkar's colleagues and the "possibility of tampering with witnesses by pressurising them after release cannot be ruled out."

Khedkar also noted that only 17 days had passed since the arrest and accepted police's contention that recording of statements of witnesses was still going on.

Being a woman, a highly qualified person and a lawyer by profession were not sufficient grounds for bail when the accused is facing the charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder, the court said.

The daughter and wife of one of the deceased suffered grievous injuries in the accident and were still undergoing treatment, the court noted adding that it will not be proper to grant bail when the offence is triable by the sessions court.

Senior counsel Amit Desai, Gadkar's lawyer, had argued that since the probe was over, Gadkar could be given bail and keeping her in jail would amount to subjecting her to pre-trial punishment.

Desai also contended that it was not a case of culpable homicide but of drunken driving under Motor Vehicles Act.

But prosecutor Pralhad Mahajan said that some of the witnesses are Gadkar's friends and she could influence them.

In the early hours of June 10, an Audi driven by Gadkar rammed a taxi on the Eastern Freeway here, resulting in the death of two persons including the taxi driver.