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Will HC stay Kejriwal's bail? Order today

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Utkarsh Mishra
Last updated on: June 25, 2024 08:46 IST
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The Delhi high court will pronounce on Tuesday its verdict on a plea by the Enforcement Directorate seeking a stay on the trial court order granting bail to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in the money laundering case stemming from the alleged excise scam.

IMAGE: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal before surrendering at Tihar Jail in New Delhi on June 2, 2024. Photograph: ANI Photo

The order is scheduled to be pronounced at 2.30 pm.

In his written submission filed on Monday, the Aam Aadmi Party leader defended the bail order and asserted that no prejudice would be caused to the ED if he is released at this stage as he could be sent back to custody in case the high court subsequently decides to set aside the order.


Staying the operation of 'the well-reasoned bail order' would amount to virtually allowing the petition for cancellation of the bail, Kejriwal argued.

A vacation bench of Justice Sudhir Kumar Jain had reserved the order on June 21 after the agency challenged the trial court's decision and put it in abeyance until the pronouncement.

The AAP national convenor, who was arrested on March 21 by the ED, could have walked out of Tihar jail had the high court not granted the interim relief to the central anti-money laundering agency.

The trial court granted bail to Kejriwal on June 20 and ordered his release on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh, and imposed certain conditions, including that he will not try to hamper the investigation or influence the witnesses.

The ED has contended that the trial court's order was 'perverse', 'one-sided' and 'wrong-sided and that the findings were based on irrelevant facts.

In a note filed on Monday in relation to the plea to stay the bail order, the ED said the decision did not consider the material demonstrating the AAP leader's 'neck deep involvement' in the offence of money laundering linked to the alleged excise scam.

Kejriwal, in his written submissions, said the assertions of the ED are 'palpably wrong, misleading and tantamount to subterfuge and misrepresentation'.

"The repeated contention of the ED that it was not given a proper opportunity of hearing and/or all its contentions have not been dealt with warrant to be rejected at the outset. As stated, the order granting bail not only deals with all the relevant contentions of both the sides but also the reasons for grant of bail duly reflect a due and proper application of mind by the Learned Court on each and every aspect," he said.

It is not a case of perversity which is apparent on the face of the record, he submitted, adding the fact that he is a political figure who is opposed to the dispensation at the Centre, cannot be the ground for 'cooking up' a false case against him and to deny him the due process of law.

"Respondent (Kejriwal) is gravely aggrieved by the stay order on his bail order which has rendered justice to be a casualty and the same ought not to be continued even for a moment any further," he said.

"The order passed by the Special Judge granting bail was not only well reasoned but prima facie showed a due application of mind in considering as well as faithfully recording and dealing with relevant arguments and contentions raised on behalf of both the parties'. Therefore, to stay the order would tantamount to virtually allowing the petition at the threshold," he said.

On June 20, Special Judge Niyay Bindu, who sat as the vacation judge, granted bail to Kejriwal in the money laundering case, saying the Enforcement Directorate (ED) failed to furnish direct evidence linking him to the proceeds of crime in the money laundering case.

On June 21, the high court had put in abeyance the operation of the bail order till the pronouncement on the issue of stay and asked the parties to file written submissions by June 24.

Kejriwal has approached the Supreme Court against the interim stay on his bail.

On Monday, the top court fixed June 26 for hearing his plea, saying it would like to wait for the pronouncement of the high court order on the issue.

The excise policy was scrapped in 2022 after the Delhi lieutenant governor ordered a CBI probe into alleged irregularities and corruption involving its formulation and execution.

According to the CBI and ED, irregularities were committed while modifying the excise policy and undue favours extended to the licence holders.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Utkarsh Mishra© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
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