Bombay HC Agrees To Hear Nawab Malik's Bail Plea In Money Laundering Case, Accepts His Serious Medical Condition
The Bombay High Court today accepted that the health condition of Nationalist Congress Party leader Nawab Malik, arrested in an alleged money laundering case, was serious and agreed to hear his bail application on merits from the next week.
Malik was arrested on February 23, 2022, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with property transactions allegedly linked to fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim and his aides. He moved the High Court last year seeking bail on medical grounds and also on the merits of his case.
Justice M S Karnik had earlier this month told Malik's lawyers that they would have to first satisfy the court that Malik's health condition was serious. After short arguments by Malik's counsel Amit Desai this week, Justice Karnik today agreed that Malik was suffering from serious medical condition.
"I am taking that he is suffering from serious medical condition. We will hear this matter on merits from next week," the court said.
Malik's counsel Desai with advocate Kushal Mor had argued that Malik had been in prison for over a year. He has lost a kidney and the other kidney is functioning weakly. "It takes 2-3 weeks for permissions from courts for tests, that is not how it should work," Desai said. He pointed out the exception under Section 45 of the PMLA which provides for cases where an accused is under 16 years of age or is a woman or is sick or infirm.
"If there is no necessity for a man in custody, and the primary object is to secure his presence in trial, then why burden the public treasury? His (Malik's) bed (in a hospital run by State) can be used by someone else. He (Malik) can look after himself. Do not burden government unnecessarily if the man can look after himself," Desai argued.
In May 2022, the special court designated to hear cases related to PMLA had refused to grant him bail on medical grounds but permitted him to get admitted to a private hospital for treatment.
With PTI Inputs