In another blow to former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt, the Gujarat High Court (HC) on Friday refused to grant him bail in a 1996 case, where he had allegedly framed a lawyer in a narcotics case. The trial is ongoing at a court in Palanpur.
“The court was of the opinion that there were no changed circumstances. The court did not go into the merits. We will move the Supreme Court with a bail application,” said advocate Saurin Shah who is representing Bhatt.
The matter was taken up by the court of Justice Sonia Gokani, where Bhatt had submitted that several arguments were missed out by the plaintiff when he had moved a similar petition earlier. Moreover, merits were not looked at and liberty had been reserved in his favour to argue the same on merits, which he is choosing to exercise now with this petition. Shah had also argued on Bhatt’s “changed circumstances.”
Bhatt was arrested in September 2018. The Gujarat HC had directed the CID to probe the case in which Sumer Singh Rajpurohit was booked for allegedly keeping 1.5 kg opium at a hotel in Palanpur in 1996. Rajpurohit had filed a case against Bhatt back then, when he was serving as the Superintendent of Police at Banaskantha.
Bhatt continues to be in judicial custody, lodged at a Palanpur jail in relation with his conviction of a 1990 case of custodial torture. He is serving his sentence of life imprisonment. The HC, in October, had rejected his plea seeking the suspension of his sentence in the 1990 case.
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