Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Sisodia only to be produced via video conferencing, says Delhi court

PUNJAB NEWS LINE | June 01, 2023 12:35 PM

NEW DELHI: A Delhi court on Thursday ordered that former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia should only be produced via video conferencing during hearings in the ongoing Delhi Excise Policy scam case due to security issues.

During Thursday's hearing as well, the AAP leader was produced before the Rouse Avenue Court through video conferencing after the Delhi Police's request.

This was however, opposed by Sisodia and his counsel.

The court stated that until a decision is made regarding the Delhi Police's application concerning security, Sisodia will be produced through video conferencing.

It then fixed July 19 as the next date of hearing. Sisodia's judicial custody has also been extended to this date.

The counsel appearing for Sisodia alleged that the AAP leader had been mistreated during his previous appearance.

The counsel told the court that his neck was grabbed and was taken away by the police when he was answering questions of media.

The court raised questions about the behavior of the media and expressed displeasure when there was a gathering of people in the courtroom.

The court said that it will also consider the need of putting a ban on media, if needed.

It said that Sisodia will be allowed to meet his family members and counsel only, and he will not meet any outsider.

When Sisodia was asked by special judge M.K. Nagpal whether he should be presented via video conferencing or in person, the AAP leader replied that he wanted to appear physically in court.

The Delhi Police however, had filed an application requesting Sisodia's appearance through video conferencing. It stated that there was a higher risk to security due to the increased crowd during Sisodia's physical presence.

The court said that anyone can come wearing a lawyer's uniform which can lead to security issues during Sisodia's appearance.

Sisodia said that during physical hearing he could meet his lawyers to discuss various things on this the court said that his lawyers were allowed to meet him in lock up room of the court.

The court has directed the authorities concerned to preserve the CCTV footage of the incident in which Sisodia was allegedly heckled and to produce it on the next date of hearing.

Judge Nagpal after taking cognisance of the ED charge sheet had summoned all the accused, including Sisodia, for today's hearing.

The same court had on May 23 extended his judicial custody for the same date in the ED case.

The ED had arrested Sisodia on March 9, after the CBI arrested him on February 26 this year.

Special Public Prosecutor Naveen Kumar Matta filed the charge sheet, which runs into over 2,100 pages.

Earlier the Delhi High Court had also dismissed Sisodia's bail plea in the excise policy case being probed by the CBI.

The judge said that the nature of the allegations is quite serious that the excise policy was formed at the instance of South Group with mala fide intention to give undue advantage to them.

While denying him bail, the judge also said that Sisodia being an influential person can influence witnesses, who are also public servants.


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