SC refuses bail to Sajjan Kumar, says can’t treat him as a VIP patient

Kumar, 77, had sought bail claiming that his condition was critical and that he recently collapsed in jail following which he was undergoing treatment in the Emergency ICU at Safdarjung Hospital
Sajjan Kumar. (File photo)
Sajjan Kumar. (File photo)
Updated on Sep 04, 2021 01:17 AM IST
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By Abraham Thomas, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The Supreme Court on Friday refused bail to Delhi Sikh riots convict Sajjan Kumar on medical grounds and reminded the senior Congress leader that he cannot be treated as a VIP patient to have a hospital of his choice as he was in custody for heinous offences.

Kumar, 77, had sought bail claiming that his condition was critical and that he recently collapsed in jail following which he was undergoing treatment in the Emergency ICU at Safdarjung Hospital.

On Friday, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed a response to the bail plea and said Kumar’s medical condition was stable and was improving.

The bench of justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and MM Sundresh said, “The medical report shows appellant is being fully attended to. Even medical board was constituted. His condition is stated to be stable and improving and needs further hospitalization. We are not willing to grant medical bail or bail otherwise.”

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Appearing for Kumar, senior advocate Ranjeet Kumar said his client lost 17 kilos and required urgent medical attention. He urged the court that on his personal expense, the appellant be shifted to Medanta Hospital.

The court remarked, “You are feeling as if he is the only patient to be treated in the country. He is accused of a series of heinous crimes and you want him to be treated as a super VIP patient, that we won’t permit.”

Kumar told the court that another bail petition of his is already pending in the court. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for CBI, told the court that Kumar’s bail plea was listed, heard and rejected by the court after a medical board was constituted by AIIMS in March last year.

The bench said, “A picture was portrayed before us as if he is on his last leg. We find these ailments are due to advanced age.” The court told Kumar’s counsel, “You are not out of prison that you will get the benefit you want. Merely because you are a high profile person does not mean that this court will keep hearing your bail petitions.”

Kumar has been incarcerated for the past 31 months after his conviction in the 1984 Delhi anti-Sikh riots by the Delhi high court on December 17, 2018, This order reversed the acquittal granted by a Delhi court in 2013.

The bail application was opposed by the complainants who are riot victims. Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, appearing for the families of victims, said the accused was all throughout roaming free and came to be arrested following the Delhi high court’s order.

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Sunday, October 24, 2021