The Delhi High Court recently sent a former Assistant Sales Tax officer to Tihar for her unconvincing medical prescription and granted bail to a chartered accountant for his authentic parking ticket,while hearing their pleas in the same case.
Ved Kukreja,the former tax officer,and chartered accountant Ashish Garg had moved an appeal against their conviction by a CBI court in February for their alleged role in a 2006 corruption case.
Kukreja (56) and Garg were sentenced to three and two years in jail,respectively. On their pleas,the trial court had suspended their jail term so that they could file appeals in the High Court.
In March,they moved the High Court and their interim bail pleas were extended till the next date of hearing. They were,however,ordered to appear in court on the day the merit of their applications were to be decided. But they failed to show up and Justice V K Shali issued non-bailable warrants (NBWs) against them.
Fearing arrest,Kukreja and Garg immediately filed applications for cancellation of NBWs and sought to placate the courts fury with their explanations.
Kukreja produced before Justice Shali medical prescriptions citing illness as the reason for her inability to honour the courts order.
Garg,on the other hand,produced a ticket of the High Courts multi-level parking facility. His lawyer claimed that his client came to the court,but could not enter the complex on time because of a long queue at the entry pass counter.
Photocopy of the registration shows entry of Gargs vehicle in the parking lot at 9.55 am. Another photocopy of the visitors pass shows the time as 12.04 pm. All these documents clearly show that Garg was present on the court premises,though he ought to have been more vigilant and appear at the time when the matter was called out, the judge said after cancelling his NBW.
Kukreja was not so lucky. Her prescriptions failed to impress the judge,who said she was being casual about judicial proceedings.
The prescription doesnt show that she is suffering from any ailment that restricts her movement. On the first date also,she was not present. She is taking the proceedings very lightly. She seems to have taken for granted that there will be suspension of sentence and extension of interim bail or the grant of regular bail, the judge said.
Justice Shali said the court has no sympathy for a public servant caught accepting bribe. Accordingly,the application for cancellation of NBW is rejected. Let the appellant be taken into custody, the judge said,sending Kukreja to Tihar Jail.