SC Denies Early Hearing for Arvind Kejriwal, Extending Jail Time Amid Poll Season


GG News Bureau
New Delhi, 15th April.
 Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s hope for immediate relief suffered a setback as the Supreme Court declined an early hearing on a plea challenging his arrest last month in connection with alleged money laundering linked to the liquor policy scam.

Arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 21, Kejriwal’s plea for expedited proceedings was turned down by the Supreme Court bench, necessitating his continued stay in custody until the agency responds on April 27 and the court reconvenes for arguments on April 29.

This decision means that Kejriwal is likely to remain incarcerated for at least ten days into the Lok Sabha election period, wherein his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), aligned with the Congress-led opposition bloc, poses a significant challenge to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Delhi and Punjab, collectively holding 20 Lok Sabha seats.

During today’s hearing, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing Kejriwal, apprised the bench of Justice Sanjiv Khanna and Justice Dipankar Datta of compelling facts, seeking an expedited hearing starting from Friday. However, the court refrained from accommodating the request, emphasizing the need for a reasonable timeline.

The denial of an early hearing by the Supreme Court follows a similar ruling by the Delhi High Court last week, which upheld the validity of Kejriwal’s arrest based on the ED’s submission of substantial evidence linking him to the alleged liquor policy scam.

Kejriwal, a vocal critic of the ruling BJP, has vehemently contested his arrest, citing timing and alleging political vendetta. His plea for relief was dismissed by the Delhi High Court, prompting him to approach the Supreme Court.

The AAP leader’s arrest is part of an ongoing investigation into the alleged liquor policy scam, with two of his associates also arrested by the ED. The agency has accused the AAP of conspiring to receive bribes amounting to ₹600 crore for liquor permit allotments in Delhi.

In a related development, a Delhi court extended Kejriwal’s judicial custody till April 23, further prolonging his confinement as legal proceedings unfold.

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