NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it will hear after four weeks an appeal filed by the Punjab government against a Punjab and Haryana High Court order granting bail to former SAD minister Bikram Singh Majithia in a drugs case.
Punjab govt asked for pass over as lawyer was appearing in other court
At the outset, a bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose and Sudhanshu Dhulia was urged that the hearing may be passed over as senior lawyer Shyam Divan, who was to argue on behalf of the Punjab government, was busy in some other court.
"It will be difficult to pass over the case today. We will rather list it for hearing after four weeks," the bench said.
Earlier on January 30, Justice Surya Kant, while sitting on the bench with Justice J K Maheshwari, had recused himself from hearing the Punjab government's plea, saying that he was part of the high court bench which had directed the setting up of a special task force to probe the drugs case.
Punjab govt challenged Majithia's bail on the day he walked out
Consequently, the matter was referred to Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on the administrative side for setting up another bench and the matter was then listed before the bench led by Justice Bose. The Punjab government has challenged the high court order dated August 10, 2022 which stated that there were "reasonable grounds" to believe that Majithia was not guilty.
The Shiromani Akali Dal leader had walked out of jail the same day.
Majithia was booked on the basis of a 2018 report of the anti-drug special task force (STF) into a drug racket in Punjab.
The STF report was based on confessional statements given to the Enforcement Directorate by some accused, including Jagjit Singh Chahal, Jagdish Singh Bhola and Maninder Singh Aulakh.
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