NEW DELHI: JNU Students’ Union president Kanhaiya Kumar on Friday approached the Delhi High Court seeking bail after he failed to get relief from the Supreme Court, which refused to hear his plea on the grounds that it would set a dangerous precedent.
However, due to technical issues, the petition could not be filed on time for immediate hearing. Kumar’s lawyers Sushil Bajaj and Vrinda Grover rushed to the High Court’s Registrar (Listing) Loren Bamniyal and mentioned the petition but could not complete the formalities within the stipulated time.
Both lawyers were escorted by police personnel after the directions from the apex court. Though the lawyers are pushing for the bail petition to be heard on Monday, it is likely to be delayed as the Registrar General has sought some clarification papers so the file can be numbered.
Earlier in the day, the proceedings in the Supreme Court took an unexpected turn when the court transferred the bail plea after declining to entertain it.
“You are leading a dangerous proposition. If this court will entertain it (bail plea bypassing courts below it), it will become a precedent which will be available to all the accused in the country. Wherever there will be sensitive cases involving political persons or prominent persons or others, you know the atmosphere in the court. So in every case if it is said that Supreme Court is the only court (to hear the matter), it would be a dangerous precedent,” a bench comprising justices J Chelameswar and A M Sapre said.
Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar strongly opposed the hearing of the plea by the apex court saying it would send out a wrong message that the HC was incapable of looking into the matter. The bench did not agree with the arguments of a battery of senior advocates including Soli Sorabjee, Raju Ramachandran and Rajeev Dhawan that an extraordinary law and order situation, threat to life of the accused and his counsel, a hostile environment at the lower court and the simmering situation had compelled them to rush directly to it. They also submitted that they moved the highest court for bail as already a writ petition concerning Kumar’s arrest was pending before it. Counsels for the Centre and Delhi Police objected to it stating that facts in the writ petition and bail plea were different.
However the bench agreed with the Kumar’s lawyers on the security situation, saying, “We do agree with you that it is an exceptionally extraordinary circumstance.” Transferring the bail plea, the bench took an assurance from the SG that the Centre and Delhi Police would provide adequate security to Kumar and his lawyers and asked the high court to expeditiously deal with the matter.
Meanwhile, Kanhaiya Kumar’s medical report stated that he had sustained external injuries during the attack on him at the Patiala House court complex. The report said there were multiple abrasions on his left foot and nose, apart from tenderness in his left toe. Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi had claimed that Kumar was never attacked while being produced in the court premises.
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