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Supreme Court grants interim bail to Arvind Kejriwal till June 1

2024-05-11 03:53   Services   Delhi   13 views Reference: 129

Location: Delhi

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The Supreme Court on Friday granted interim bail to jailed Delhi Chief Minister (CM) Arvind Kejriwal till June 1 in the money laundering case registered against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Delhi excise policy [Arvind Kejriwal v. Directorate of Enforcement].

A Bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta passed the order.

The ED had on Thursday vehemently opposed the Supreme Court's suggestion to grant interim bail to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to campaign for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

 

Kejriwal is currently in Tihar jail after he was arrested by the ED on March 21 in the money laundering case connected to the Delhi excise policy.

 

The Supreme Court was hearing his petition challenging his arrest and remand by the ED in connection with the Delhi excise policy case. The Delhi High Court had earlier rejected his plea, leading to the present appeal before the apex court.

During the hearing of the appeal on May 7, the top court had hinted at granting interim bail to Kejriwal in order to enable him to campaign for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

 

However, it had also said that if interim bail is granted, Kejriwal would not be allowed to discharge any official duties as Chief Minister.

 

The ED’s money-laundering probe against Kejriwal stems from a case registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in 2022 on a complaint made by Delhi Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena.

 

It has been alleged that a criminal conspiracy was hatched by AAP leaders, including Kejriwal, former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and others to create loopholes in the Delhi Excise Policy of 2021-22 to favour some liquor sellers.

 

Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21 and is presently lodged in Tihar Jail.

 

The ED had earlier submitted that Kejriwal cannot be treated differently from any other criminal merely because he is a politician.

 

Kejriwal's counsel later countered that although Kejriwal, being a Chief Minister, is not immune from prosecution, his rights are not inferior to the rights of any other person.

 

During an earlier hearing, the top court had questioned the ED on the timing of Kejriwal's ahead of the 2024 Indian general elections