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Tuesday, July 16, 2024, 11:33 am

Tuesday, July 16, 2024, 11:33 am

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Mr. Kejriwal should have resigned right away after being placed under arrest.

Mr. Kejriwal should have resigned right away after being placed under arrest.
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The CBI’s arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in the Delhi excise policy corruption case looks to be unjustified and motivated by bad faith. The election occurred shortly before the Supreme Court of India heard an appeal against a Delhi High Court judgement that suspended bail given in a money-laundering case. The High Court delayed his release due to the Enforcement Directorate’s plea, but did not issue a detailed order. The Supreme Court rescheduled its hearing for June 26 to await the verdict.

The High Court issued a comprehensive order to halt the grant of bail. On June 26, the CBI arrested him and requested custody for interrogation in a CBI court. The timing of formally arresting someone who has been in jail since March 21, despite being granted interim bail, is unusual. It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the main objective was to deny him the chance of freedom, even if the Court restored the bail order.

Mr. Kejriwal is accused of being a beneficiary and driving the controversial excise policy that benefitted certain spirits manufacturers, which led to significant profits. The inquiry has been ongoing for nearly two years, with individuals being apprehended periodically. The evidence mostly comprises of remarks made by accused individuals who were later pardoned and appointed approvers.

The vacation judge granted bail in a money-laundering case, recognising that someone should not be imprisoned indefinitely in the expectation of obtaining direct proof to defend their actions. The High Court found that the verdict was not based on all available evidence and did not give the prosecution an opportunity.

The current regime’s exploitation of the bail system to target political opponents is reflected in the image of accused individuals facing alternating favourable and unfavourable decisions from lower to upper courts.
To ensure impartiality, agencies should provide a compelling and well-documented case to the trial court before arresting anyone, including high-ranking officials. The courts should then determine the accused’s guilt or innocence. To avoid the impression that he may influence witnesses or interfere with the evidence, Mr. Kejriwal should have resigned right away after being placed under arrest.

ABHISHEK VERMA


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