Millennium Post (Kolkata)

HC denies interim relief to Kejriwal,

To hear plea on Apr 3 after ED’s response ‘Even an hour spent in custody is far too long if arrest is illegal,’ says Singhvi alleging that Kejriwal was arrested just before polls to “disable” him and his party


NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court declined to provide immediate relief to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday. Kejriwal, who was detained by the Enforcemen­t Directorat­e (ED) in connection with a money laundering case tied to an alleged excise policy fraud, was denied interim relief as the court stated that the case presents significan­t issues that cannot be hastily resolved without considerin­g the ED’s position.

Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma issued a notice regarding Kejriwal’s plea, which disputes his arrest and the subsequent remand to the ED. The court has requested the ED to submit its response, including on the matter of interim relief, by April 2. The judge declared that the case would be considered for final resolution on April 3, and no postponeme­nts would be permitted.

Senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi, representi­ng Kejriwal, argued that the arrest was based on the “unsubstant­iated” statements of two coaccused, whom he referred to as “Jaichands and Trojan horses” due to their perceived “betrayal”. He contended that the principles of democracy, basic structure, and level playing field are at stake, and even an hour in custody is excessivel­y

long if the arrest is unlawful. He further alleged that Kejriwal’s arrest, which occurred just prior to the Lok Sabha elections, was intended to “disable” him and his party.

However, the court dismissed Singhvi’s argument that the respondent is not required to file a response. The court deemed it appropriat­e to issue a notice of the main writ petition as well as

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