Anil Deshmukh case: Bombay High Court, on Tuesday, refused to extend its stay on an order granting bail to former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh, paving a way for him to walk out of jail on Wednesday, December 28. Currently, the former minister is lodged in Arthur Road jail in a corruption case registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
The 73-year-old Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader was granted bail by Justice MS Karnik on December 12, but the order was stayed for ten days to give the CBI time to appeal it in the Supreme Court.
However, the investigation agency filed a petition in the supreme court, but the appeal would not be heard until January 2023 due to the court's break. On the CBI's appeal, the high court last week prolonged the stay till December 27. On Tuesday, the CBI sought another extension, but it was denied by the court.
NCP hails court's decision
Meanwhile, the court's decision was hailed by the NCP on Tuesday.
In a statement, Mahesh Tapase, chief spokesperson of the party said that it has been proved that Anil Deshmukh was wrongfully framed in a fake case and he will come out of jail tomorrow after spending more than one year behind the bars.
"We will take his case to the people and make them aware of the injustice meted out to him. The party extends its support to Deshmukh and we will continue to fight against the people who falsely framed him," he added. The spokesperson further said that the party extends its support to Deshmukh and will continue to fight against the people who falsely framed him.
Deshmukh's lawyers Aniket Nikam and Inderpal Singh claimed that the CBI was trying to "overreach" the earlier order of the HC which had stated that under no circumstances another extension will be granted.
"They are failing to make out any urgency in the Supreme Court, and coming here seeking a stay. This cannot be permitted," Nikam argued.
'No further extension can be granted': HC
The vacation bench of the High Court, after hearing the arguments, said that "no further extension can be granted". With the court refusing to extend the stay, Deshmukh could be released on bail on Wednesday, his lawyers told the media.
The high court, while granting bail to Deshmukh, had noted that except for dismissed police officer Sachin Waze's statement, no testimony recorded by the CBI indicated that money was being extorted from bar owners in Mumbai at the behest of the NCP leader.
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Deshmukh approached the high court after a special CBI court rejected his bail plea last month. He sought bail both on medical grounds and the merits of the case.
He has been in jail since November 2021 after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested him in an alleged money laundering case. In April this year, the CBI arrested him in a corruption case. In October, the high court had granted him bail in the ED case.
(With inputs from PTI)
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