New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear on April 5 a plea filed by 14 Opposition parties led by the Congress alleging arbitrary use of probe agencies such as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against political leaders by the Central government. Opposition parties have been criticising the Central government for unleashing a "relentless vendetta against political opponents" through the misuse of investigative agencies by targeting prominent leaders of various parties.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud took note of the submissions of senior advocate AM Singhvi, appearing for the opposition parties such as the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Bharat Rashtra Samiti (BRS) and the Trinamool Congress (TMC), and said the plea would be taken up for hearing on April 5. The parties are seeking pre and post-arrest guidelines to be followed by the central probe agencies.
95% cases are against opposition leaders
"Ninety five per cent of cases are against opposition leaders. We are asking for pre-arrest guidelines and post-arrest guidelines," Singhvi said. "We will list it on April 5," said the bench also comprising Justice PS Narasimha and Justice JB Pardiwala.
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Opposition letter to PM Modi
Earlier this month, after the arrest of former Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia by CBI in the Delhi liquor scam case, nine opposition leaders including CM Arvind Kejriwal, Bihar Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav and Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao, wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging misuse of central agencies.
In the letter dated March 5, the leaders described Sisodia’s arrest as the result of a “long political witch hunt", claiming the leader was arrested despite a lack of evidence against him in the Delhi excise policy case. “The allegations against Sisodia are outrightly baseless and smack of a political conspiracy. His arrest has enraged people across the country. Manish Sisodia is recognised globally for transforming Delhi’s school education and his arrest will be cited as an example of a political witch-hunt."(With PTI inputs)
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