Justice Samudrala Govinda Rajulu of the A.P. High Court on Wednesday dismissed the petition filed by Kadapa MP Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy seeking bail in illegal assets case.
The Judge said that “this court is of considered opinion that the petitioner is not entitled for bail pending investigation of entire aspects relating to case”.
The verdict means he will remain in jail as a CBI court has extended his judicial remand till July 18 a few hours after the High Court rejected his bail petition.
The judge, who heard a senior counsel appearing for the petitioner and the CBI over two days, felt that this was a serious economic offence. He recalled that three charge sheets have been filed and there are five more instances which are being investigated.
Justice Govindrajulu said that the Enforcement Directorate was investigating the allegations regarding money laundering. The court had elaborately discussed upon the argument that the MP was losing his rights and there was no harm in releasing him, he said and added: “if this is viewed in bifocal manner this court is of the opinion that individual right of petitioner for bail cannot have precedence over the larger interests of society”.
The judge recalled that the allegation made in the case was that of substantial wrongful loss of public money of a large magnitude which was meant for development and welfare of public of the State.
Jagan, who was named as the key accused in the case, was arrested on May 27 and is under judicial remand at Chanchalguda jail here. His lawyers moved the High Court for bail on June 21. The Judge had completed hearings on the petition on June 27 and had reserved the orders for today.
Eminent lawyer Ram Jethmalani who had argued for Jagan, contended that his client was a prominent public figure heading a political party having 17 MLAs and two MPs. Jagan’s arrest was politically motivated and that there was no absolute evidence about his client being non-cooperative with CBI or the possibility of tampering with the evidence.
On the other hand, senior counsel for CBI Ashok Bhan had argued that the case involved financial irregularities to the tune of Rs.43,000 crore and the agency was investigating the fund flow into Jagan’s companies. Giving bail to the accused at this time may hamper investigation as the probe agency was yet to file some more charge sheets in the case.