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Trial court didn’t apply its mind: Delhi HC stays bail granted to Kejriwal

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Trial court didn’t apply its mind: Delhi HC stays bail granted to Kejriwal
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Observing that the trial court failed to apply its mind to the evidence and assertions submitted by the Enforcement Directorate while granting bail to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the Delhi High Court stayed the bail order in the ongoing excise policy case.

This move follows the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) appeal against the bail order, which a vacation bench judge initially granted on June 20. Justice Sudhir Kumar Jain presided over the high court proceedings, concluding that the trial court did not sufficiently consider the ED's evidence and assertions.

The initial bail decision by Vacation Judge Niyay Bindu from the Rouse Avenue Court included sharp criticism of the ED, accusing the agency of bias against Kejriwal due to its affiliation with the BJP-led Union government.

The High Court, however, objected to these remarks, suggesting that the trial judge's conclusions were unjustified and indicative of a lack of thorough examination of the case materials.

Additionally, the High Court acknowledged the ED's claim that it had not been granted adequate opportunity by the trial judge to present its case. This procedural issue was deemed significant enough to warrant the stay of the bail order.

Chief Minister Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21, accused of utilizing funds from liquor vendors to support his party's activities. The arrest is part of a broader investigation that has also seen several other prominent members of Kejriwal's party, including the former Delhi Deputy Chief Minister, detained. The opposition has criticized these arrests, alleging that they are motivated by political vendetta by the BJP.

Following the high court’s decision to stay the bail order, Kejriwal's legal team moved the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court, led by Justices Manoj Misra and S.V.N. Bhatti, found the High Court’s decision to reserve its order on the ED’s stay application unusual, as such orders are typically issued immediately after the hearing concludes.

The apex court refrained from issuing any ruling, stating it would wait for the high court's final order. The Supreme Court has scheduled the matter for a hearing on June 26.

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TAGS:Enforcement DirectorateExcise policy caseChief Minister Arvind Kejriwal
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