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  India   Politics  24 Mar 2024  Kejriwal moves HC against arrest

Kejriwal moves HC against arrest

THE ASIAN AGE. | BHASKAR HARI SHARMA
Published : Mar 24, 2024, 1:18 am IST
Updated : Mar 24, 2024, 1:18 am IST

Speculation is rife that Ms Kejriwal is likely to be unleashed by AAP to spearhead the party’s campaign during the ensuing Lok Sabha polls

Sunita Kejriwal, wife of Delhi Chief Minister and AAP Convenor Arvind Kejriwal, delivers his message via a video conference, in New Delhi, Saturday, March 23, 2024. (PTI Photo)
 Sunita Kejriwal, wife of Delhi Chief Minister and AAP Convenor Arvind Kejriwal, delivers his message via a video conference, in New Delhi, Saturday, March 23, 2024. (PTI Photo)

NEW DELHI: Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday moved the Delhi high court, challenging his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate and a trial court's six-day remand order in the money laundering case linked to the alleged Delhi excise policy scam. While Mr Kejriwal’s legal team sought an urgent hearing, which was declined by the high court, his wife Sunita Kejriwal read out his message sent from the ED custody in which the AAP chief said he cannot be kept behind bars for long.

In a related development, India summoned the German deputy chief of mission here and lodged a strong protest against the country's foreign ministry's "fair and impartial trial" remarks on the arrest of Mr Kejriwal.

In his high court plea that seeks an urgent hearing, Mr Kejriwal, who was arrested by the ED late on Thursday evening, contended that his arrest and remand are illegal and he is entitled to be released from custody immediately.

Earlier in the day, Mr Kejriwal's legal team requested the high court for an urgent hearing on his plea. The high court, however, turned down the request for an urgent hearing. The court said that the matter will be listed for reopening on Wednesday, the first working day after the two holidays, on account of the Holi festival.

Meanwhile, Mr Kejriwal's wife, in a video statement, read out his message sent from ED custody. Ms Kejriwal, a former IRS officer who has so far maintained a distance from active politics, quoted her husband, "Every drop of my blood is dedicated to the country... No jail can keep your brother, your son inside for long. I will soon come out and fulfil my promise.”

Mr Kejriwal's wife met him, along with his personal assistant Bibhav Kumar at the ED office later in the day. Apart from his lawyers, the court has allowed Ms Kejriwal and Mr Kumar to meet the Delhi chief minister every day for half-an-hour between 6-7 pm.

Speculation is rife that Ms Kejriwal is likely to be unleashed by the AAP to spearhead the party’s campaign during the ensuing Lok Sabha polls to garner sympathy. Dubbed as the possible replacement of the Delhi chief minister, Ms Kejriwal, according to AAP sources, could lead the party in the absence of her husband.

Amid a growing BJP clamour for his resignation, the AAP chief said that the "BJP people" need not be hated for his arrest.

Mr Kejriwal said that he was born to wage struggles and is destined for bigger challenges in the future as well, so he was not surprised by his arrest. He asserted that India has to be shaped into the strongest and greatest country in the world.

While Mr Kejriwal's arrest triggered political protests at the national level, Germany waded into the controversy by calling for a "free and fair trial".

“We assume and expect that the standards relating to the independence of judiciary and basic democratic principles will also be applied in this case,” the German foreign ministry official said.

Responding to it, the ministry of external affairs told the German envoy that his foreign ministry's remarks were an interference in India's judicial process and any "biased assumptions" were "most unwarranted".

"The German deputy chief of mission in New Delhi was summoned today and conveyed India's strong protest on their foreign office spokesperson's comments on our internal affairs. We see such remarks as interfering in our judicial process and undermining the independence of our judiciary. India is a vibrant and robust democracy with the rule of law. As in all legal cases in the country, and elsewhere in the democratic world, law will take its own course... Biased assumptions made on this account are most unwarranted," foreign ministry spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said.

It is pertinent to mention that the AAP-led Delhi government and the German government have collaborated on exploring several avenues, including infrastructure development, waste management and energy sectors. Further, they have signed an agreement over teaching German in the city government-run schools.

 

Tags: arvind kejriwal, delhi high court, sunita kejriwal
Location: India, Delhi