Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Kanimozhi bail plea

There were reports that CBI will not oppose Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea. The Supreme Court questioned CBI on the reports and CBI’s lawyer Harin Raval said it would certainly oppose Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea.

Karunanidhi came to Delhi and met Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh on 22/10/2011. On 24/10/2011 CBI did not oppose bail for Kanimozhi, Asif Balwa, Rajiv Aggarwal, Karim Morani and Sharad Kumar. It opposed bail for R. K. Chandolia and Shahid Balwa. On 31/10/2011 Supreme Court judges G. S. Singhvi and H. L. Dattu questioned Harin Raval “Is is true that during the hearing the CBI counsel said that he has no objection to bail for five out of the 14 accused?” and directed him to confirm the next day. On 1/11/2011 Harin Raval confirmed that U. U. Lalit representing CBI had not opposed bail for five accused.

On 3/11/2011 CBI Special Court rejected Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea and other bail pleas in 2G case . CBI had not opposed her bail plea and many had taken for granted that she would get bail. Judge O. P. Saini rejected her plea. Case-fixing by prosecution and defence did not succeed. DMK MPs were in court. Karim Morani’s family members had brought flowers and chocolates. Kanimozhi had applied for bail under Section 437 of Criminal Procedure Code which allows bail if the applicant is under 16, or a woman, or sick or infirm. The court said Kanimozhi belongs to upper echelons of society and a Member of Parliament. By no stretch of imagination she can be said to be suffering from any disadvantage on ground of being a woman alone.

There is much talk about bail not jail being the principle. Most of those who say that are lawyers of the accused. If the court feels witnesses need to be protected and granting bail will obstruct justice it is within its right to refuse bail. During TV discussions anchors should mention which lawyer represents whom. It should not be made out as if the panelists are not connected to the case. Comments like denial of bail is a grave miscarriage of justice and a deliberate misapplication of law or when the prosecutor does not oppose bail there is no reason to oppose bail are contempt of court. If the judiciary has shifted from the rule “bail is the rule and jail an exception” to “jail is the rule and bail an exception” it has good reasons. Prosecution’s objection is of no consequence. It was interesting to watch Rajiv Pratap Rudy on Left, Right and Centre. He criticized Congress. When Nidhi Razdan said Jaswant Singh of BJP wanted bail for the accused he replied “Nidhi, did I say Kanimozhi should not get bail. I did not.” That stumped Nidhi Razdan.

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    K Damodaran

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