Actress Rati Agnihotri and husband Anil Virwani, booked for electricity theft by the Worli police, were granted anticipatory bail by a Sessions Court on 17-02-2017. A vigilance team of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking (BEST) had visited their flat at Worli and found that the electric meter had been tampered with. The BEST team claimed that two holes had been drilled into the meter, which slowed down the reading by 87 per cent. The team claimed that this had led to losses of Rs 48.96 lakh to the BEST during the period of April 2013-January 2017. The two were booked under section 135 of the Electricity Act, 2003, on January 19.
The bail plea, filed through advocates Sadanand Shetty and Snehal Khairnar, claimed Agnihotri had been regular in paying the bills of their Worli penthouse, including electricity bills every month of around Rs 19,000 to Rs 40000.
"The applicants are in fact shocked by the allegations of the alleged tampering with the electricity meter....due to their hectic work and frequent travel, they do not stay in the said flat on a regular basis," the plea stated, claiming that they found it hard to believe that the bill would be of such a high value or that the meter was tampered with.
State prosecutor Sanjana Sharma opposed their plea on Thursday, submitting that since they were in good financial condition, they could pay the bill.
Their lawyer, Shetty, told the court that the couple had already paid Rs 10 lakh to the BEST this week along with two post-dated cheques of Rs 7 lakh each as a conditional amount pending verification of the tampering.
He also said that on the day the team visited Agnihotri's house, only domestic helpers were at home and could not give a satisfactory explanation. Sessions Judge Kishor Choudhari allowed their plea on a surety of Rs 15,000 and has directed the two to appear before the investigating officer twice a week for a period of eight weeks along with compliance of other conditions.
Source - Indian Express