MUMBAI Aug 13 Jailed Indian business tycoon
Subrata Roy, working from a high-tech office in prison, has
requested more time to negotiate the sale of some of his luxury
hotels to help to secure bail.
Roy, chairman of the Sahara conglomerate, was initially
given 10 days by the Supreme Court to talk to potential bidders
for three hotels, including Grosvenor House in London and the
New York Plaza, to raise $1.6 billion for bail.
Roy has been given an office with 600 sq ft (56 sq metres)
of space inside New Delhi's Tihar jail complex, where he can
hold video conferences, use computers and receive visitors to
try to sell or mortgage the hotels.
The initial deadline for using these facilities is set to
end on Aug. 20.
Keshav Mohan, a lawyer for Sahara, told Reuters on Wednesday
that a 15-day extension had been sought for continued use of the
facilities in prison. "The court is likely to hear the matter
tomorrow," Mohan said.
A spokesman for Sahara declined to comment on the extension
Roy was jailed in March after he failed to appear at a
contempt hearing in the long-running dispute with the capital
markets watchdog over the company's failure to repay billions of
dollars to investors who were sold outlawed bonds.
He has yet to be charged over the dispute and denies any
wrongdoing. His Sahara group has vast real estate, media and
hotel interests, part-owns a Formula 1 team and used to sponsor
the Indian cricket team.
Roy calls himself "managing worker and chairman" of Sahara
and chief guardian of the "world's biggest family", overseeing
businesses with almost a million staff and agents.
(Reporting by Suchitra Mohanty and Devidutta Tripathy; writing
by Sumeet Chatterjee; Editing by Shadia Nasralla)