‘Safer for him to stay in jail,’ says AP court rejecting Chandrababu Naidu’s plea seeking house custody

A local court in Vijayawada on Tuesday rejected a house custody petition filed by TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu, saying he would be safer in jail as his usual Z-plus security may not be provided to him under house arrest.

The former chief minister was arrested for his alleged role in a multi-crore Skill Development Corporation scam and is currently lodged at Rajamahendravaram Central Prison after a local court in Vijayawada remanded Naidu in judicial custody for 14 days on Sunday.

On Monday, a team of lawyers headed by senior counsel Siddharth Luthra representing Naidu had filed a petition to grant house custody to the former CM, citing threat perception.

Naidu has been a Z-plus category security protectee for several years already, with a team of NSG commandos guarding him always.

“House arrest was not granted. The reason cited by the Court for not giving house arrest is security,” Naidu’s lawyer Jayakar Matta told PTI.

According to Matta, the Court felt that Z-plus security will not be provided under house arrest, so, it is safer for Naidu to stay in jail than at home under house custody.

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Further, the court said it could have given house custody if it was possible to successfully provide Z-plus security to Naidu. The court said jail is better for security reasons.

Matta said that Naidu’s legal team will move the high court for house custody as soon as it receives the order copy from the ACB court which rejected the petition.

The advocate said they may move the AP High Court tonight or Wednesday.

Naidu was arrested in connection with a fraud case involving misappropriation of funds from the Skill Development Corporation, leading to a loss of Rs 300 crore to the state government, AP CID Chief N Sanjay had said after the arrest.

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