Arnab's Bail plea in Supreme Court today

After the Bombay High Court rejected Arnab Goswami’s plea for interim bail on Monday 9 November, his legal team immediately filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the decision of the Bombay High Court and is seeking bail now from the apex court in the country. Thankfully for his family, friends and sympathizers, the Supreme Court has granted him an urgent hearing and Arnab’s bail plea will be heard today at 10.30AM Delhi India time.

The plea is an appeal against the Bombay High Court order of November 9 and will be heard by a Bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Indira Banerjee.

The High Court had rejected Goswami’s plea while asking him to move Sessions court for regular bail. The High Court in its order had that Arnab Goswami had failed to make his case for the High Court to exercise its powers under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution and he had not availed himself the remedy he had in the Sessions Court.

Arnab Goswami and two other accused Feroze Shaikh and Nitish Sarda (all three named in the suicide note of Anvay naik) are challenging their arrest in the case and seeking interim bail.

Relatives of Feroze Shaikh, Parveen Shaikh have also moved the Supreme Court seeking bail for the accused. All three matters will be heard together by the Division Bench at 10.30 AM.

Arnab Goswami has raised seven grounds for his release from custody in an effort to convince the Apex Court to release him from jail.

Arnab Goswami in his plea for bail pleads:

  1. He is Innocent
  2. The investigation already conducted and closure report filed
  3. Further investigation can be conducted with him being kept in custody.
  4. No evidence of offence not made out
  5. All witnesses in the case have already been examined
  6. He has never refused to make the payments 
  7. He is ready to co-operate and he is not a flight risk

If he can be home with his family for Diwali, this is his last chance if Arnab’s bail plea is granted, failing which, it could be a long road to December 10, when his substantive application for quashing of the FIR comes up for hearing in the Bombay High Court against the same Division Bench of Justice S.S. Shinde and Justice M.S. Karnik.

In refusing Arnab’s bail plea the Division Bench of Justices SS Shinde and MS Karnik had also clarified that the remedy to apply for regular bail under Section 439 of the Code of Criminal procedure shall remain unaffected.

“Petitioner has an alternate and efficacious remedy under section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to apply for regular bail. At the time of concluding the hearing of Applications, we had made it clear that if the petitioner, if so advised, to apply for regular bail under section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure before the concerned Court, then, in that case, we have directed the concerned Court to decide the said application within four days from filing of the same.”

Arnab Goswami has been in judicial custody since November 4 following his arrest in relation to 2018 case which was closed in April 2019 before it was re-opened in 2020 based on a representation made by Naik’s daughter, Adnya Naik to the State Home Minister, Anil Deshmukh.

Perhaps legally and judicially controversial, this political “re-opening” of the case by the state machinery which circumvented legal precedents, was given the seal of approval by the Bombay High Court.

From many angles, the prosaic extension by the judges, of the definition of “superintendence” of police by the state’s political masters – is something the apex court needs to closely look at. If left unattended, it will set bad precedent for other states to follow their own will putting in complete peril – the very structure of India’s federalism. \

That can logically extend to the option of secession being open with a real danger up in the North of the country.

Goswami was initially kept at a local school which has been designated as a COVID-19 centre for the Alibaug prison.

On November 8, he was shifted to the Taloja jail in Raigad district after police allege he was found using a mobile phone while in judicial custody.

Arnab on the other hand alleged he was refused access to his lawyers.

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