States & UTs

    Excise Case: Delhi court dismisses Kejriwal's interim bail plea, extends judicial custody till June 19

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    The Hawk
    June5/ 2024
    Last Updated:

    The court directed Tihar Jail Authorities to conduct necessary medical tests and provide treatment for Kejriwal, extending his judicial custody until June 19, 2024.

    Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal

    New Delhi: The Rouse Avenue Court on Wednesday dismissed the interim bail plea moved by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal seeking 7 days bail citing medical reasons in excise policy money laundering case.
    While dismissing the plea, the court directed the Tihar Jail Authorities to conduct all required medical tests and avail treatment for the applicant, Arvind Kejriwal. Meanwhile, the Court also extended his judicial custody until June 19, 2024. Arvind Kejriwal was produced through virtual mode before the court.

    In compliance with Supreme Court directions, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has surrendered himself before the Tihar Jail on June 2, 2024.
    The same court on June 1, had kept the order reserved on the bail plea moved by Arvind Kejriwal.
    During arguments, Senior Advocate N Hariharan, who appeared for Kejriwal, submitted that "the interim bail was for the purpose of campaigning for my party, which is a national party...I am out for 20 days and had I not done it, you would've said he didn't campaign and fell ill. It was a lot of stress due to the campaigning, and you know that stress is an aggravator of diabetes. What was alarming was that KETO levels rose in the urine. The aspect of concern is high level of sugar and the keto numbers."

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    Appearing for Enforcement Directorate (ED), Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and Additional Solicitor General SV Raju submitted that there are several suppressions of facts, including health conditions. During preliminary objections, ED lawyers stated that we have objections to filing of interim bail as well. This court cannot modify the Superior Court order. He's on interim bail because the SC granted, what he is asking here is an extension of Supreme Court order.
    This interim bail plea is required to be dismissed as it is full of suppression of facts. ED, while opposing Kejriwal plea seeking extension interim bail by one weeks said, Supreme Court had granted Liberty to him that he can file regular bail but the liberty to seek extension of interim bail is not granted to him. He has said that these tests require 7 days, the nature of the test has been suppressed.
    ED also raised maintainability issues on the interim bail plea and submitted that instead of getting a medical test done, he was travelling across. medical test would take more than an hour.
    ED further submitted that the applicant in fact gained 1 kg and falsely claiming that he has lost 7 kg. The Registrar of the Supreme Court has passed a speaking order, and the same has been suppressed by them. There is a reason of suppression and it is because he had been travelling for campaigning purposes, but he didn't get the tests done then
    Recently, Kejriwal, through his legal team, has filed two different bail application before the concerned court. His regular bail plea listed for hearing on June 7, 2024.
    Earlier, appearing for ED, ASG SV Raju submitted that he's campaigning in Punjab. His health did not hinder him from campaigning. Strenuous campaigning has been done. Last minute bail is being filed. His conduct doesn't entitle him to any bail.
    Kejriwal earlier moved the Supreme Court for extension of interim bail. On Wednesday the Supreme Court rejected his plea, stating that since he was given liberty to move trial court for regular bail, the plea here is not maintainable.
    Kejriwal had gotten interim bail from Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta on May 10 and was asked to surrender to Tihar jail on June 2. On May 17, the bench reserved verdict on his challenge to the validity of his arrest by ED in Excise Policy money laundering case.
    The Supreme Court further clarified that since order is already reserved on challenge to arrest, Kejriwal's plea for extension of interim bail has no relation to main petition.
    On May 28, the Rouse Avenue Court reserved the order on cognizance point on ED's Supplementary chargesheet (prosecution complaint) filed against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in connection with a money laundering case related to Excise Policy case.
    The Court, after hearing ED's submissions, fixed the matter for pronouncement of order on cognizance point on June 4, 2024.
    On May 17, 2024, Enforcement Directorate officials along with Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) Naveen Kumar Matta filed the charge sheet in the Rouse Avenue Court of Delhi.
    On May 10, the top court granted him interim bail until June 1 in the money laundering case registered by the ED in connection with the Delhi excise policy. However, it ordered that he not visit the Office of the Chief Minister and the Delhi Secretariat. The bench had asked Kejriwal to surrender on June 2.
    The apex court was hearing Kejriwal's appeal against a Delhi High Court judgement that dismissed his plea against arrest by the ED and his subsequent remand in the excise policy case.
    Kejriwal, while filing an appeal in the apex court, contended that his arrest after the announcement of the general elections was "motivated by extraneous considerations.".
    On April 9, the High Court dismissed his plea for release from jail and rejected his argument of political vendetta amid the looming Lok Sabha elections.
    The High Court had said that Kejriwal's absence from nine ED summons over six months undermined any claims of special privilege as Chief Minister, suggesting his arrest was an inevitable consequence of his non-cooperation.
    Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21 in connection with a money laundering probe relating to alleged irregularities in the now-cancelled Delhi excise policy 2021-22.

    —ANI