Sisodia files plea for regular bail in excise case | Latest News Delhi - Hindustan Times

Sisodia files plea for regular bail in excise case

Jan 30, 2024 05:15 AM IST

Special judge MK Nagpal on Monday sought a reply from ED on the bail application, and listed the matter for hearing detailed arguments on February 2

Jailed Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Manish Sisodia has moved court, seeking bail in the money laundering case registered against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the central agency’s probe into alleged irregularities in the Delhi excise policy 2021-22.

Manish Sisodia (PTI)
Manish Sisodia (PTI)

Special judge MK Nagpal on Monday sought a reply from ED on the bail application, and listed the matter for hearing detailed arguments on February 2.

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Separately, Sisodia also approached the court, seeking custody parole to visit and meet his ailing wife for two days on a weekly basis. The court also issued notice on the application and listed it along with the bail application moved by Sisodia.

In his bail application, Sisodia, the former deputy chief minister of Delhi, said that he has been detained for more than 11 months and has not been implicated in the alleged offence as the central anti-money laundering agency has failed to establish any financial gain or undue advantage obtained by him.

He added that he is a victim of political witch hunt, and his pre-trial detention is in violation of his fundamental rights. He further pointed out that he is at risk of prolonged imprisonment due to delayed and protracted legal proceedings.

READ | ‘Money trail of 338 crore tentatively established': SC rejects bail to Manish Sisodia in excise policy case

Sisodia highlighted that there has been a lack of progress in the trial despite more than three months having passed since his bail was denied by the Supreme Court on October 30, 2023. He pointed out that the apex court, relying upon the assurance of ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation that the trial would conclude within 6-8 months, had granted him liberty to file a fresh bail application if the trial is protracted and proceeds at snail’s pace in the next three months.

“The proceedings before the special court remain at the same stage as they were at the time of the judgement specifically at the compliance stage under section 207/208 of the CrPC. It is evident that the statement made by the respondent lacked a factual basis or rationale and was solely made to detain the applicant with no actual prospect of expediting the trial process,” Sisodia’s bail application said.

Sisodia further told the court that the material against him being relied upon by ED are identical to those being relied by CBI in the predicate offence case, and no material is placed on record to show that he was involved in the activities connected with the proceeds of crime.

He also underscored that a ground of parity is also made out as the Supreme Court has granted bail to Benoy Babu, another accused in the case, on the ground that the trial has not been commenced, and he has suffered pre-trial detention of about 13 months.

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