A lawyer’s delivery of a popular dialogue from the Hollywood cult-classic The Godfather after a hearing was responded to by the Supreme Court in an equally interesting manner. The exchange took place on Thursday after the court heard an anticipatory bail request made by a Jharkhand industrialist.
The case involved Sanjay Kumar Tiwari, who runs a construction company. A deputy manager of the State Bank of India had mistakenly transferred Rs 100 crore to him from the Jharkhand government’s account.
The businessman, expecting money for two memorandums of understanding from the government, had thought the amount was the payment linked to the agreements. By the time the bank realised its mistake, he had spent Rs 52 crore from the sum.
Mr Tiwari later paid Rs 84 crore to the bank after a complaint. The Jharkhand High Court gave a conditional anticipatory bail to him and ordered the rest of the money be returned in instalments by April.
Advocate Balaji Srinivasan, appearing for the petitioner seeking further protection from arrest, argued today that there was no crime involved.
The court agreed to protect his client from arrest but he bargained for more relief.
Hearing the case, Justice RF Nariman of the Supreme Court jovially said,” You are pushing your luck and are falling into your trap”.
Mr Srinivasan later made an off-the-cuff remark.
“Lordships, allow me to quote from The Godfather- Behind every great fortune lies a great crime,” he said.
Justice Nariman shot back immediately: “No. We do not agree with you. Jamsetji Tata (the founder of Tata Group) had a great fortune and there was no crime”.
The movie starring Marlon Brando and Al Pacino is based on the 1969 novel with the same name – written by American author Mario Puzo – that narrates the rise and fall of an Italian mafia family operating in the United States.
The court granted a four-week relief from arrest to Mr Tiwari, saying he will have to approach the trial court for a regular bail.