Kejriwal seeks bail extension for health reasons

| Updated: 27 May, 2024 1:48 pm IST

NEW DELHI:Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has approached the Supreme Court seeking a seven-day extension of his interim bail, citing serious health concerns. Kejriwal, who’s currently on interim bail in connection with the excise policy case, was granted bail on May 10 and is scheduled to surrender on June 2. However, his party, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), has raised alarms about his deteriorating health.

According to AAP, Kejriwal has lost 7 kg since his arrest and has high ketone levels, indicating a potentially serious illness. They have stated that he needs to undergo a PET-CT scan and other medical tests. Kejriwal’s legal team, led by Senior Advocate A M Singhvi, has urged the court to grant the extension, but the Supreme Court is yet to make a decision.

The case stems from alleged corruption and money laundering linked to the now-scrapped Delhi excise policy for 2021-22. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) alleges that Kejriwal was the mastermind behind the scam, with his party reportedly using Rs 45 crores of illicit funds for the Goa elections.

On May 10, the Supreme Court bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta granted Kejriwal interim bail until June 1 to campaign for the Lok Sabha elections. The court refused Singhvi’s request to extend this period beyond the election results on June 4, emphasizing that Kejriwal must adhere to the timeline and surrender on June 2.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the ED, objected to Kejriwal’s reported remarks suggesting that a vote for AAP would prevent his return to jail. Mehta argued, “This is a slap on the system. That if you vote for me, then I will not have to go to jail on the 2nd. How can that happen?” Justice Khanna reaffirmed that the court’s order must be followed.

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Union Home Minister Amit Shah criticized the interim bail as “not a routine and normal judgment,” suggesting that Kejriwal received “special treatment.” Justice Khanna welcomed criticism, stressing that the rule of law would prevail.

Meanwhile, Kejriwal remains hopeful, stating in a recent interview that if the INDIA bloc wins, he’ll be released from jail on June 5. He asserts his innocence, claiming there’s no money trail, and accuses Prime Minister Narendra Modi of being behind his arrest.

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As the deadline approaches, Kejriwal’s plea for an extension is pending, with the Supreme Court expected to rule soon. Despite the legal challenges, Kejriwal’s supporters stand by him, emphasizing his dedication to serving Delhi and hoping for a favorable outcome for his health and legal situation.

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