Liquor scam: AAP MP gets bail after 6 months

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted bail to Aam Aadmi Party leader Sanjay Singh, even as it posed some searching questions for the arresting agency – the Enforcement Directorate – including asking why he had been jailed for over six months without a trial or recovery of alleged bribe money.

The probe agency – asked specifically if there was genuine further need for custody of Mr Singh – eventually declined to contest the opposition leader’s bail plea; appearing for the ED, Additional Solicitor General SV Raju said “without going into merits, I will make a concession in the bail matter.”

The Rajya Sabha MP has been in Delhi’s Tihar Jail since his arrest October last year in the alleged liquor excise policy scam, which has roiled the opposition party – and seen the arrests of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his former deputy, Manish Sisodia – weeks before a general election.

The AAP leader has seen earlier bail pleas – filed before lower courts, including the Delhi High Court – turned down; in HB

February, in fact, the High Court said “no ground” for relief had been made, but directed the trial court to “expedite the trial in the present case once it commences”.(!

That relief was finally granted this afternoon, after a bench of Justice Sanjiv Khanna, Justice Dipankar Datta, and Justice Prasanna B Varale said Mr Singh could be released during pendency of the trial.