THE GUJARAT High Court on Wednesday granted bail to Siddharth Patel, son of former MLA Chhabil Patel, paving way for his release after spending 18 months in jail for his alleged involvement in murder of former BJP MLA Jayanti Bhanushali.
The bench of Justice Vipul Pancholi allowed bail application of Siddharth stating the prosecution had failed to point out a prima facie case against the applicant. “…considering the submissions canvassed by learned advocates appearing for the parties and keeping in view of the aforesaid decisions and other decisions upon which reliance is placed, if the facts of the present case, as discussed hereinabove, are examined, this Court is of the view that the prosecution has failed to point out prima facie case against the applicant,” Justice Pancholi noted in his order.
The copy of the order was made available on Thursday.
Siddharth is the third accused in Bhanushali murder to get bail. In November last year, Rahulkumar Patel and Nitin Patel, two business partners of Chhabil Patel were also granted bail by the High Court.
According to prosecution, 26-year-old Siddharth was part of criminal conspiracy hatched by his father Chhabil Patel to eliminate Bhanushali due to a political rivalry.
Prosecution said that Siddharth had booked air-tickets for his father and Surjitbhau, the co-accused in the case and that he had helped arrange a motorcycle for the alleged sharp-shooters.
However, while pleading for bail, Siddharth’s lawyers YS Lakhani and SK Patel submitted that being a former MLA and a farmer who do deploys technology, his father frequently flies within India as well as abroad and therefore when his father asked him to book tickets for Surbjitbhau, he was not excited to know who the co-traveller was.