Enforcement Directorate on Thursday informed the Supreme Court that it proposes to shift alleged conman Sukesh Chandrashekhar and his wife Leena Paulose who are currently lodged in Tihar Jail to Mandoli Jail in Delhi.
On Senior Advocate R Basant's objection to transfer of Chandrashekhar to Mandoli Jail, the vacation bench of Justices CT Ravikumar and Sudhanshu Dhulia, while adjourning the matter to June 30, permitted Chandrashekar to file a statement in response to the ED's submission.
"Since this court specifically observed that matter could be taken further only after giving the names of appropriate jail, we are of the view that matter can be taken up further only after giving name of appropriate jail. List this matter on June 30. In the meanwhile, Statement if any on behalf of the petitioner shall be filed," the bench said in its order.
Earlier the ED, while opposing shifting of Chandrashekhar from Tihar Jail, had sought initiation of perjury action against him.
In the hearing today, Senior Advocate R Basant submitted that the prayer in the writ only pertained to transferring him to any other jail and had nothing to do with investigation.
Submitting that out of 34 cases registered against Chandrashekhar, the majority of cases were registered in Bangalore, Basant urged the bench that he may either be transferred to a jail in Bangalore or any other jail outside Delhi.
Remarking that in the last hearing, the Top Court had asked the Central Government to submit the names of appropriate jail where Chandrashekhar could be transferred, Justice CT Ravikumar said,
"Last time the court had asked you to name of the jails where he could we transferred and thereafter we'll hear the matter. There's no whisper about that. We had said that once that is furnished, we'll not pass any order but we'll place it before the Regular Bench. Specifically, we had said."
Responding to the remarks made by the bench, ASG SV Raju submitted that Chandrashekhar could be transferred to Mandoli Jail in Delhi. The ASG added that the said jail is guarded bySpecial Para Military Forces.
"He can be placed in Mandoli jail. It's manned by paramilitary forces from outside and inside we are putting TN Special Forces to oversee him to have watch over him. Regular Delhi Police will not be there over him," submitted the ASG.
Objecting to ED's proposal to shift the petitioner to Mandoli Jail, Senior Advocate R Basant at this juncture said, "Outside Delhi it was mentioned. I may even be placed in Ghaziabad Jail in UP but not in any jail under Delhi Administration."
"Someone who's in jail wants a choice of jail," remarked Justice Dhulia.
"You haven't mentioned that you want to be transferred to any other jail which is not under the same authorities. If you have any objections, you can file it," said Justice Dhulia to Senior Advocate R Basant.
ASG SV Raju at this juncture submitted that shifting the petitioner from Tihar Jail was unwarranted. He further said that while being lodged in Jail, Chandrashekhar was involved in all illegal activities and he had also called up some Supreme Court judges impersonating the Law Minister asking them to pass orders in his favor.
"Do one thing you just give this. If the prayer is in compliance with the earlier order, you can suggest that Mandoli Jail. Let the bench consider it. Now you're saying Mandoli, put it in black and white," remarked Justice Ravikumar.
Sukesh Chandrashekhar and Leena Paulose, who are currently lodged in New Delhi's Tihar Jail in cases related to cheating and extortion, have approached the Supreme Court by way of a writ petition seeking transfer to any other jail voicing apprehensions of life threat.
The Director General (Prisons), Delhi has filed an affidavit stating that the conduct of Sukesh Chandrashekhar in jail was unsatisfactory and he was found deliberately violating the prison rules.
The Director General has also denied his allegations that he was assaulted within the jail and that the medical examination conducted by the Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital on May 17 did not report any external injuries on him.
The Director General asserted that he is in safe and secure custody in the Delhi jail with a round the clock CCTV surveillance. His wife is also kept in the same prison at the women section and there is no life threat to them, the affidavit stated.
Case Title: Sukash Chandra Shekhar @ Sukesh And Anr. Versus Union Of India And Anr.| W.P.(Crl.) No. 129/2022