Asserting that a high ranking officer cannot be denied his rights under the Constitution, the Supreme Court today rejected the Chhattisgarh government's appeal challenging the bail granted to suspended Chhattisgarh Police Academy director Gurjinder Pal Singh in a corruption case.

A vacation bench of Justice B R Gavai and Justice Hima Kohli dismissed the state government's appeal against the Chhattisgarh High Court, saying the application is nothing but a totally unwarranted exercise on behalf of the state.

"While considering an application for bail, the status of applicant is not to be considered. As an ordinary citizen, he is entitled to his rights under the Constitution, equally a high ranking officer cannot be denied right under the Constitution", the Bench observed.

"In a case of disproportionate assets, most evidence is documentary evidence and there is no question of tampering with such evidence. In any case, the high court has imposed stringent conditions in the interest of prosecution. The petition is without merits and is dismissed," the Bench said.

The state government was represented by Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi and Advocate Sumeer Sodhi.

Rohatgi submitted that Singh is a high ranking police officer of the rank of additional director general of police and has been indulging in tampering of evidence and influencing witnesses; this has been ignored by the high court.

The High Court had granted bail to Singh on May 12, 2022. Singh, a 1994-batch IPS officer who had served as IG of Raipur, Durg, and Bilaspur during the BJP rule, has been facing probe in three criminal cases.

He was suspended from the post of director of Chhattisgarh Police Academy and made an accused in three FIRs for offences of sedition, corruption, and extortion.

With PTI inputs