‘No money recovered’: Supreme Court grants bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh : The Tribune India

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‘No money recovered’: Supreme Court grants bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh

In jail since Oct, first AAP leader to be released in excise case

‘No money recovered’: Supreme Court grants bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh

Tribune News Service

Satya Prakash

New Delhi, April 2

The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh, who has been in jail since October last year in connection with a money laundering case related to the Delhi excise policy scam, after the Enforcement Directorate said it had no objection to his release.

Prima facie, didn’t commit an offence

You (ED) have kept him in custody for 6 months. Fact of matter is money has not been recovered... prima facie he has not committed an offence. SC

4 leaders told to join BJP or face jail: Atishi

Delhi minister Atishi Marlena claimed she, her Cabinet colleague Saurabh Bharadwaj, MLA Durgesh Pathak and Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha had been told to join the BJP or face arrest by the ED within a month. However, Delhi BJP president Virendra Sachdeva claimed that Atishi was “lying”.

“We direct that Sanjay Singh be released on bail on terms and conditions fixed by the trial court,” a three-judge Bench led by Justice Sanjiv Khanna said, noting that the accused AAP leader has been behind bars for six months. However, the Bench, which also included Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice PB Varale, clarified that the concession given to Singh will not be treated as a precedent.

Singh is the first AAP leader who has been granted bail in a case related to Delhi excise policy scam. The ED alleged that an employee of businessman Dinesh Arora delivered Rs 2 crore to Singh’s house on two occasions. Singh was arrested by the ED on October 4, 2023, following allegations made by Arora, who has turned approver in both the ED and the CBI cases related to excise scam.

The Bench, however, observed that no money had been recovered from Singh and there were nine exculpatory statements given in his respect by Arora. “You (ED) have kept him (Singh) in custody for six months. Dinesh Arora has not initially implicated him. Later on, in a statement, he does. No money has been recovered; the trace of money is not there because it was long back. Fact of the matter is that money has not been recovered. Please keep in mind that if we are with him, we are required to record in terms of section 45 (of PMLA) that he has prima facie not committed an offence. That could have its own ramifications in trial,” the Bench cautioned Additional Solicitor General SV Raju.

The order came after Raju told the Bench that the ED had no objection if Singh was released on bail during the pendency of proceedings. Raju’s submission was in response to the court’s query if the ED needed Singh’s further custody. The Bench said if there were no instructions from the probe agency, the ASG could argue on merits and the matter could be decided accordingly.

Though the ED had an arguable case, it was ready to concede and thus Singh may be released on bail, ASG Raju told the Bench. “Without going into merits, I will make a concession in the bail matter in the peculiar facts,” Raju submitted.

The development came a day after a special court here sent Delhi Chief Minister and AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal to 14-day judicial custody in a money laundering case related to the excise scam. Two other AAP leaders—former Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and former Health Minister Satyendar Jain—continue to be in jail in separate money laundering cases.

Earlier, senior counsel AM Singhvi questioned the basis and necessity of Singh’s attest, contending that the ED’s probe was nothing but a vendetta against the AAP MP after he held a press conference to call out the error of putting his name in supplementary chargesheet in place of someone else.

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#Enforcement Directorate #Supreme Court

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