The Bombay High Court on Monday dismissed a petition filed by suspected bookie Anil Jaisinghani challenging his "illegal" arrest in a case of an alleged attempt to blackmail and bribe Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis's wife Amruta Fadnavis.

A division bench of Justice A. S. Gadkari and Justice Prakash D. Naik said the plea was dismissed as it was without any merits and the arrest cannot be said to be illegal.

"Petition being dehors (without) of merit is accordingly dismissed," the bench said.

"It is apparently clear that the petitioner was produced before the learned Additional Sessions Judge, at Mumbai, within a period of 24 hours from their arrest," the HC said.

The Malabar Hill police station in south Mumbai on February 20 registered a First Information Report (FIR) against Anil Jaisinghani and his daughter Aniksha Jaisinghani for allegedly threatening to make public certain audio and video clips that purportedly show Amruta Fadnavis accepting favours from Aniksha.

In his petition, Anil Jaisinghani claimed he was illegally arrested on March 19 but was not produced before the court within 24 hours as mandated by law.

The bench, however, noted that Anil Jaisinghani was detained in the wee hours between March 19 and 20 and taken to Vejalpur police station in Gujarat.

"We have perused the Remand Report dated March 21, 2023, wherein it is stated that the accused were arrested on March 20, 2023, at 17.00 hrs. Arrest/search panchanama was recorded and reasons for arrest were informed to the accused. The guidelines issued by Supreme Court were followed at the time of their arrest. The information about the arrest of the accused was given to relative and acquaintance of the accused," the HC said.

The Jaisinghani father-daughter duo was booked for offences under sections 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 385 (extortion) of the Indian Penal Code, and sections 8 (induce public servant using corrupt means) and 12 (abetment) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Aniksha, who was arrested on March 17, was granted bail in the case on March 27 by a sessions court.

Anil Jaisinghani, arrested by the Mumbai Police from Gujarat, is currently in judicial custody.

The Jaisinghani Senior's Advocate Mrigendra Singh had argued that his client was produced before the court in Mumbai 36 hours after his arrest.

Singh said that everything in the case was being monitored by the complainant's husband who is the deputy chief minister of Maharashtra.

State Advocate General Birendra Saraf had refuted the allegations and said the police followed all procedures properly and there had been no delay in producing Anil Jaisinghani before the court for remand.

Saraf said the police had merely taken "possession" of Anil Jaisinghani on March 19 and they wanted to produce him before the competent court in Mumbai.

He said as per the arrest memo, Anil Jaisinghani was arrested on March 20 at 5 pm and was produced before the sessions court on March 21.

Cause Title- Anil Jaisinghani v. State of Maharashtra

Click here to read/download Judgment

With PTI Inputs