Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Delhi Excise policy case: Delhi High Court Justice Prathiba M Singh recused from hearing the matter

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The Delhi High court Justice Prathiba M Singh recused herself from hearing a plea filed by Former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Mumbai-based company who also is the communications in charge of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Vijay Nair on the pretext that the sensitive information had been leaked into the public domain by the investigative agencies.

Referring back to the last order, Justice Singh found out that somebody she knew had been impleaded as a respondent in the case.

The Justice refused to hear and matter and instructed it to be listed before another bench on February 20 which she believes will do justice to it.

On November 2022, a bench of Justice Yashwant Varma had given instructions to 5 media houses ,while directing them to peruse the broadcasts and file a status report .

Justice Verma had also directed News Broadcasters & Digital Association (NBDA)for finding out through their member media companies about the source of information leaked and other related information. 

The bench was unhappy with the reportage by the media companies including Republic TV, India Today, etc, in the case. 

The Enforcement Directorate informed the bench that there was no press release been circulated in relation to the investigation. 

The counsel for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had however  submitted that several press releases were circulated but no information relating to the investigation had been released along with the press release. 

It was also said that the press release was given after the tweet of Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia.

The Court had inquired about the clarity that none of the news broadcasts were given by the ED or CBI. Did they (media houses) ever reach out to the agency as to if the information is correct and how many witnesses have been examined?”

On November 14, 2022, Justice Verma had questioned the agencies (Enforcement Directorate as well as CBI)to put before court all the releases given to media along with press communication records with respect to the Delhi Excise Policy case.

Vijay Nair was arrested on September 27 by the CBI and  after which he was  remanded to  

CBI custody for a period of 5 days for his alleged role in the irregularities in the Excise policy of the Delhi government. 

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