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'Merely because you are politician, can't bypass statutory remedies, procedure,' SC refuses to consider bail by Kavitha

By Jhanak Singh      22 March, 2024 03:34 PM      0 Comments
Merely because you are politician cant bypass statutory remedies procedure SC refuses to consider bail by Kavitha

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday declined to consider a plea by BRS MLC K Kavitha seeking her release on bail in Delhi liquor policy scam case, saying it can't bypass statutory remedies and procedure just because she was a politician and afford to approach the top court.

A bench of Justice Sanjiv Khanna, M M Sundresh and Bela M Trivedi categorically told senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Kavitha that she has to approach the trial court for the purpose.

Also Read -  Delhi Liquor Policy Case: K Kavitha withdraws plea from Supreme Court challenging her arrest

Kavitha was arrested from her residence in Hyderabad on March 15. She has been sent to custodial remand of the agency till March 23.

The Enforcement Directorate has registered the money laundering case on August 22, 2022 in relation of scheduled offences of the CBI which lodged its case on August 17, 2022 in connection with irregularities committed in framing and implementation of excise policy for the year 2021¬22 and payment of bribe. 

Sibal sought to refer to statement by the ED before the top court in September, 2023 after summons were issued to her.

"There are two things as far as vires of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act is concerned, we would consider her plea, as we are already bench was considering petitions to reconsider the Vijay Mandal Chaudhary & Ors Vs Union of India judgment and her petition can be tagged with that batch. It would require time," the bench said.

"As far as bail is concerned, you have to go to trial court. We are very clear, merely because you are a politician and can afford to approach SC, we can't bypass procedure," the bench told the counsel.

The bench also told the counsel that there was no interim relief in her pending plea which was withdrawn on March 19.

"On March 19, when you withdrew her petition against the summons, you didn't raise question of interim relief," the bench told the counsel.

The counsel said since she was arrested by then, there was no question of interim relief then.

At the outset, Sibal said, "Please don't tell us to approach the High Court. See what has happened in case of Hemant Soren."

"Only one request, please don't tell me to go back to High Court. Hear it, decide it against me, I do not mind. But see what is happening in our country. Every statement is of an approver, there is not a single piece of evidence. It is contrary to this court's order," Sibal said.

"Please don't get emotional or be upset," the bench told him.

"I hope you don't mind. When the history of this court will be written, this will not be a golden period," he said. 

"Let's see," the bench said. 

The bench, however, issued notice to the Union government on her petition challenging validity of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, seeking a response within six weeks.

The ED alleged that Kavitha was a part of the South lobby which had paid an illegal gratification of Rs 100 crores in cash to the politicians and public servants in Delhi for manipulating the liquor policy of the Delhi government and she was also a major beneficiary of it.  



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