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2G gets tinsel town glitter

New Delhi, May 24: Always with father means Kabhi Kabhi in court.

The 2G scam special court, the great leveller that brought down to earth many an occupant of ivory towers, today had a visitor who managed to stand out among the unusual gaggle of guests trooping in these days.

Zoa Morani, who is making her debut in Shah Rukh Khan’s new production Always Kabhi Kabhi, arrived in the court along with her father Karim Morani, an accused in the 2G allocation case.

A family member said Zoa, who is promoting her film scheduled to be released on June 17, chose to be with her “ailing” father at the time of crisis. “Zoa is very close to her father and wanted to come along. She left the court before lunch break at 1pm as she had to attend some promotional events for the film in Mumbai,” he said.

Morani, Mumbai-based film producer and Bollywood event organiser, has been linked to Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Usman Balwa.

Cineyug, the event organiser owned by Morani and Balwa, had hosted most of Shah Rukh Khan’s international live shows in the past.

According to the CBI’s chargesheet in the 2G scam, Morani, the director of Cineyug Films, helped transfer bribe money of Rs 200 crore to the DMK-run Kalaignar TV through his company in return for spectrum licence favour. Balwa, who is in judicial custody along with other chargesheeted persons, is said to have a 49 per cent stake in Cineyug.

Clad in a Versace shirt and a spondylitis collar wrapped around his neck, Morani, accompanied by his wife, two daughters and family members, reached the courtroom 15 minutes before the proceedings began at 10am.

After hearing his counsel’s argument that the status quo should be maintained, judge .P. Saini deferred proceedings on Morani’s interim bail plea for May 26, which means he will not be arrested till then. But he will have to appear before the court during the hearing daily like the other accused lodged in Tihar jail.

“We are much relieved with the court’s order. He is a heart patient and had a bypass surgery as well,” said Ali Morani, Karim’s brother.

Yesterday, the judge had dismissed Morani’s anticipatory bail sought on health ground and asked him to appear before the court today.

“It was a purely business transaction and nothing more than that. I cannot say anything more than that as the matter is in the court,” Morani told The Telegraph, asked about the alleged transfer of Rs 200 crore to Kaliagnar TV.

“Everybody was so excited as Zoa’s debut film is being released next month. But the case has made everyone gloomy. Zoa is very depressed ahead of her film’s release next month. She has already cancelled some of the events related to the film’s promotion,” a relative said.

The 22-year-old Zoa’s first brush with films was when she worked as an assistant director to Farah Khan in SRK’s Om Shanti Om. Zoa was at the Eden on Sunday when KKR played against Mumbai Indians.

The special court today dismissed the bail pleas of Balwa, his cousin Asif Balwa and their associate Rajeev Agarwal.

Asif and Rajeev are the directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables, which was also allegedly used for the transfer of Rs 200 crore to Kalaignar TV. “They are accused of playing key roles in the transfer of a Rs 200-crore bribe to Kalaignar TV through various firms promoted by Shahid Usman Balwa. Their bail pleas are dismissed,” said the judge.

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