Goyal denied bail on medical grounds | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Goyal denied bail on medical grounds

ByRutuja Gaidhani
Apr 14, 2024 07:52 AM IST

The court observed on Thursday that granting him bail on medical grounds was not justified at this stage and he was “better looked after at the hospital”

MUMBAI: A special PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) court has denied bail on health grounds to Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal, who was recently diagnosed with cancer. The court observed on Thursday that granting him bail on medical grounds was not justified at this stage and he was “better looked after at the hospital”.

Mumbai. India. Jan 13, 2024. PMLA court one day allowed 74-year-old arrested Jet Airways (India) Ltd founder Naresh Goyal to meet his ailing and bedridden wife co-accused Anita Goyal on humanitarian grounds at their home in South Mumbai. Jan 13, 2024. (Photo By Raju Shinde/HT Photo)
Mumbai. India. Jan 13, 2024. PMLA court one day allowed 74-year-old arrested Jet Airways (India) Ltd founder Naresh Goyal to meet his ailing and bedridden wife co-accused Anita Goyal on humanitarian grounds at their home in South Mumbai. Jan 13, 2024. (Photo By Raju Shinde/HT Photo)

The 74-year-old businessman has been undergoing treatment for cancer at the Sir H N Reliance hospital for the past two months. He was admitted there after the court denied him interim bail in February but allowed him to undergo treatment at a hospital of his choice.

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While rejecting Goyal’s application for bail on health grounds, special judge MG Deshpande observed that the court had taken every effort from the beginning to prioritise the applicant’s health and welfare.

“Consequently, the potential benefits of bail at this stage may not be justified. More clearly, it can be said that what he is getting in Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital is the best from his own point of view for which he was hospitalized. What he will get after the bail, is neither pleaded nor justified,” the special judge said.

Goyal, in his petition, highlighted his deteriorating mental health, saying a denial of medical bail might well be writing his death warrant as it was obvious that he would not survive – maybe not even long enough to see the commencement, much less conclusion, of his trial. It further stated that Goyal had become very weak due to his advancing age and especially after he underwent a prostate surgery to remove a duodenal malignant tumour.

However, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), through their reply, strongly opposed Goyal’s application, saying that it was filed to merely delay the trial proceedings. There was no significant change in Goyal’s circumstances since his interim bail application was rejected and the hospital had nowhere mentioned that his disease was life-threatening, the ED submitted.

Referring to Goyal’s contention about his deteriorating mental health, the court noted that hospitalisation was the best remedy for his condition as adequate care would not be available at home or in jail.

Goyal was arrested by the ED in September 2023 in connection with an alleged bank loan fraud worth 538 crore. The ED’s case against Goyal is based on a May 3 FIR registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against Jet Airways (India) Ltd, Goyal, his wife Anita and former company executive Gaurang Ananda Shetty and unknown public servants and private persons.

According to the ED, Jet Airways had taken a loan from a consortium of 10 banks to meet its operational expenditure and an amount of 6,000 crore was still outstanding. “A forensic audit was done on the airlines whereby it was seen that around 1,152 crores had been diverted in the guise of consultancy and professional fees and 2,547.83 crore had been diverted to a sister concern, namely Jet Lite Limited, to clear its loan,” the ED said.

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