Delhi HC Refuses To Grant Interim Bail To AAP Leader Manish Sisodia, Allows To Meet His Ailing Wife For One Day
The Delhi High Court today refused to grant any relief to the Aam Aadmi Party Leader Manish Sisodia seeking interim Bail for six weeks in a money laundering case arising from the alleged excise policy scam. Sisodia had moved the Delhi High Court seeking relief on a temporary basis on the ground of being the sole caregiver to his ailing wife.
The Single Judge Vacation Bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma while refusing to grant interim bail noted that "However, at the same time this Court feels that the Petitioner should get an opportunity to meet his wife. Therefore one day as per the convenience of Mrs. Seema Sisodia, the petitioner be taken to his residence/hospital if she is admitted in the hospital, from 10 AM to 5 PM, in custody."
The Court further directed that "However, during this period, the petitioner shall not interact with the media in any manner nor shall he meet anybody except his wife and members of his family. The Commissioner of Delhi Police is also directed to ensure that there should not be any media gathering near the vicinity of his residence or the hospital where he is taken. The petitioner shall also not use any phone."
The Court in its order observed that "The allegations in the present case are extremely serious in the nature though this Court does not allow itself to get influenced by overall gravity of the allegations but at the same time the Court cannot forget the position being held by the Petitioner in the present dispensation."
Justice Dinesh relied on its earlier order of May 30, 2023, by which a similar application moved by Manish Sisodia was dismissed. The Court in that order had held that considering that the Petitioner is an influential person and having held the position of Minister having 18 portfolios and the witnesses are mostly public servants, the possibility of the witnesses being influenced cannot be ruled out.
In it's today order, the High Court considered the Medical Report of the wife of the Petitioner called from the LNJP Hospital where she was taken for examination on June 3, 2023 and noted that the Court has always been of the very firm view that the patients in need of medical care must be provided immediate, effective and adequate treatment.
The High Court stated that "This Court has also taken note of the serious degenerative diseases from which Mrs Seema Sisodia, wife of the Petitioner is suffering. This Court would direct and expect that the best of the medical treatment should be provided to Mrs Seema Sisodia, though it is the choice of the patient and the members of her family that from where the treatment is to be taken. This Court as a guardian of the administration of justice would suggest that Mrs Seema Sisodia may be examined by the board of doctors to be constituted by a medical superevident at AIIMS."
The Judge further observed that "Mrs. Seema Sisodia or the members of her family attending to her may contact the office for the medical examination and treatment. The Court while dealing with such applications is always in dilemma that on one hand there are pressing humanitarian issues and at the same time there are serious issues which go to the core of the administration of Justice." observed the Delhi High Court.
The order was reserved on Saturday when Sisodia's lawyer had claimed that pursuant to the court's directions passed on Friday, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader was taken in custody to meet his wife earlier in the day but the latter's health condition deteriorated and she was taken to be the LNJP Hospital before he could reach home. The ED has opposed the plea for interim bail on the grounds of the possibility of evidence tampering
Senior Advocate Mohit Mathur along with Advocate Karan Sharma represented the AAP leader Manish Sisodia before the High Court.
Cause Title: Manish Sisodia v. Enforcement Directorate