The Supreme Court today extended the interim bail granted earlier to the Aam Aadmi Party leader and former minister Satyendar Kumar Jain on medical grounds.

The Bench of Justice Bela M. Trivedi and Justice Satish Chandra Sharma ordered, "Having considered the submissions made by the learned counsel for the parties. Without expressing any opinion on the merits of the case, we are inclined to extend the interim order which was initially passed on 26th May 2023 on medical grounds and extended from time to time till this date." The Court further directed the matter to be listed on January 8, 2024.

Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi along with Advocate-on-Record Vivek Jain appeared for Satyendar Jain while Additional Solicitor General S.V. Raju appeared for the Enforcement Directorate.

On May 26th, the Supreme Court granted interim bail to Jain based on medical grounds. The court carefully reviewed the leader's medical reports and, taking into consideration the findings, provided conditional interim bail. The conditions included the leader being permitted to undergo treatment at a private hospital of his choosing.

Senior Advocate Singhvi had today made an urgent mention before the CJI Chandrachud objecting to Jain's SLP being listed before Justice Trivedi and requested an adjournment until January, advocating for the matter to be heard by the Bench led by Justice Bopanna. However, the CJI refused to pass any directions and stated, "If it is listed before a Judge, the Judge will take a call of what to do. I will not control what the Judge is doing in the matter listed before her."

The CJI also stated that he finds it particularly surprising when members of the Bar seek the prioritized listing of their cases before a specific judge. Accordingly, the matter was heard at length before the regular Bench led by Justice Trivedi.

At the outset of the hearing, Justice Trivedi had observed that Jain had to surrender. The Court had also noted that the accused were not cooperating with the trial. However, on medical grounds, the Court further extended the interim relief and adjourned the matter till January. ASG Raju informed the Bench that there is a consistent pattern of untoward incidents occurring with the AAP leader right before each court hearing. He also pointed out that the CJI had also asked Jain to surrender during the hearing.

Satyendar Jain, who was arrested on May 30 last year by the agency, is accused of having laundered money through four companies allegedly linked to him. The ED had arrested Satyendar Jain in the money laundering case based on a CBI FIR registered against him in 2017 under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

In 2022, the trial court had taken cognizance of the prosecution complaint (charge sheet) filed by the ED against Satyendar Jain, his wife, and eight others, including the four firms, in connection with the money laundering case.

In the impugned order, the Delhi High Court had observed that Jain is an influential person and may tamper with evidence. The High Court also held that there was no illegality or infirmity in the trial court's order by which the bail pleas were dismissed. While pronouncing the order, the high court said Satyendar Jain cannot be said to have satisfied the twin conditions for bail under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and dismissed the bail plea

Cause Title: Satyendar Kumar Jain v. Directorate Of Enforcement [SLP(Crl) No. 6561/2023]