On Arvind Kejriwal's bail plea, Delhi High Court seeks CBI's response

The CBI raised an objection to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal directly moving the High Court for bail without approaching the trial court first.
On Arvind Kejriwal's bail plea, Delhi High Court seeks CBI's response
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The Delhi High Court on Friday issued a notice to the CBI, seeking the probe agency's response to a bail plea filed by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in connection with the liquor policy case.

Kejriwal, who was arrested by the CBI on June 26, is currently lodged in Tihar jail. A trial court had extended his judicial custody until July 12 in the money laundering case related to the now scrapped Delhi excise policy.

The CBI raised objections to the Aam Aadmi Party supremo directly moving the High Court for bail without first approaching the trial court. In his bail application, Kejriwal claimed he was taken into illegal custody by the CBI without following the due procedure of law.

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On Arvind Kejriwal's bail plea, Delhi High Court seeks CBI's response

The High Court observed that strong grounds are needed to approach it directly for bail, even though it shares jurisdiction to hear bail petitions.

"In how many matters has the Supreme Court said go to trial court on propriety? Law is clear, we have the concurrent jurisdiction. The Supreme Court has said don't clog the higher courts when the remedy is available to you. There must be some reason why you come to High Court directly," the judge orally remarked.

In the bail plea, the AAP chief alleged the CBI was continuously haranguing and harassing him in the garb of the ongoing investigations in the liquor policy case, and called it a matter of grave dismay and concern.

Kejriwal, who was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 21, was granted bail by the Rouse Avenue Court in the money laundering case on June 20. However, the trial court's order was paused by the High Court.

The CBI arrested Kejriwal on June 26 after the trial court allowed the agency to examine him in court. Following the arrest, Kejriwal withdrew his petition filed in the Supreme Court challenging the order passed by the Delhi High Court pausing his bail in the money laundering case.

In a remand application filed in the trial court previously, CBI said Kejriwal "did not cooperate" during the custodial interrogation and was “deliberately and intentionally evading the just and relevant questions related to the case”.

“He also evaded questions regarding the transfer and utilisation of ill-gotten money to the tune of Rs 44.54 crore for the Goa assembly elections by his party during 2021-22," the central agency claimed.

The Delhi Chief Minister, the CBI further stated, is a prominent politician and a “very influential person” and he could influence witnesses or tamper with evidence in the case. 

Source: India Today

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