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Business News/ News / India/  Sweet mangoes turn sour in Arvind Kejriwal-ED legal battle: Delhi court notes 'deviation' from diet, verdict on Monday
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Sweet mangoes turn sour in Arvind Kejriwal-ED legal battle: Delhi court notes 'deviation' from diet, verdict on Monday

While the Enforcement Directorate claimed that “the content of his (Arvind Kejriwal's) diet does not match the prescribed diet of the doctor”, the Delhi CM's lawyer argued that “out of 48 meals sent from home, mangoes were there only three times”.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is in judicial custody and lodged in Tihar jail in connection with a money laundering case linked to the Delhi excise policy. (HT_PRINT)Premium
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is in judicial custody and lodged in Tihar jail in connection with a money laundering case linked to the Delhi excise policy. (HT_PRINT)

Is Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal "deliberately" eating mangoes and sweets to spike sugar level? A Delhi court will deliver its verdict on the chief minister's fresh plea seeking permission to allow him to consult a doctor for 15 minutes daily on Monday.

During a court hearing on Friday, the court observed that there appears to be a “deviation" from what Kejriwal was allowed to eat in home-cooked meals and what was supplied to him. "The deviations are certainly there. And they are without order of the court," the court was quoted by Live Law as saying.

What's the case?

Kejriwal filed a fresh plea on Friday, seeking direction to jail authorities to administer insulin and allow him to consult his doctor through video conferencing daily for 15 minutes. He also sought to allow his wife to join and remain present on the video call.

The development came a day after his counsel said he would withdraw the earlier petition and "will file a better one".

The Delhi chief minister said that since the beginning of his judicial custody, his blood sugar levels have fluctuated at an alarming rate due to acute diabetes, which is posing a high risk to his health.

The court had asked the jail authorities on Thursday to submit a report on Kejriwal’s diet in Tihar jail, including the medicines taken by him.

Arvind Kejriwal is currently in judicial custody and lodged in Tihar jail in connection with a probe into the alleged ‘scam’ linked to the now-scrapped Delhi's excise policy. He was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 21 and sent to judicial custody till April 15, after being in the ED custody for some time. His judicial custody was later extended to April 23.

The argument around mangoes during Friday's hearing

The ED had claimed on Thursday that Kejriwal is “deliberately eating mangoes and sweets" in jail, despite being a diabetic, to increase his sugar level in a bid to create a medical ground to get bail.

However, Kejriwal's counsel denied the allegation levelled by the Enforcement Directorate.

What happened during Friday's hearing 

While the ED claimed on Friday that "the content of his [Kejriwal's] diet does not match the prescribed diet of the doctor", the Delhi CM's lawyer argued that "out of 48 meals sent from home, mangoes were there only three times.

ALSO READ: AAP alleges ‘plot to kill’ Arvind Kejriwal in jail, says he's being denied insulin; LG expresses ‘concerns’

Advocate Zoheb Hossain, appearing for the ED, told the court, "Please see the diet prescribed to him. It has no reference to any sweet or fruits or sweet items. It is on that basis the submission was made. On that limited submission the report was called."

Reacting to this, Kejriwal's counsel Abhishek Singhvi was quoted by Bar and Bench as saying, “No mangoes have been sent after April 8. The mangoes have been made to look like sugar bullets. Their sugar level is much less than brown rice or white rice."

ALSO READ: Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal to meet 2 ministers each week, will run government from Tihar jail: AAP

"They said I used sugar with tea. I used sugar-free in my tea. Because I am a diabetic. How petty and political and ridiculous ED can get…I am asking the court to direct the jail superintendent to ensure adequate treatment is provided. It doesn't mean that I am a prisoner I've no right to health." Kejriwal's counsel said.

“Is he a gangster? Is he a hardcore criminal? That he cannot get 15 minutes VC daily (with his doctor),"  the counsel added.

What the jail report said, how the court reacted

The counsel for jail authorities alleged that Kejriwal stopped taking insulin sometime back. "On the whole, blood sugar levels have been maintained. Although he is claiming he is getting home-cooked food, as rightly pointed out by the ED, the prescription has no stipulation that there should be some fruits etc. He is not following the prescribed diet in the food sent from his home," the counsel was quoted as saying.

The lawyer also presented the AIIMS report before the court and said, "The food that has to be avoided are mangoes, bananas, chiku etc. Home cook food should follow this diet prescribed by AIIMS."

Noting these claims, the court told Kejriwal's counsel, "There is a diet chart filed on April 1. Are you aware? And home cooked food was permitted as per that chart. I want a few clarifications, (whether) food was sent as per the diet chart or not."

Singhvi then argued on behalf of Kejriwal, "I don't think it's the law, that the jail authorities argue an application that the applicant cannot get home-cooked food. I followed the diet chart with a small exception that mangoes were sent three times and one time alloo poori in prashad."

The court observed, "The deviations are certainly there. And they are without order of the court."

(With inputs from Bar and Bench and Live Law)

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Published: 19 Apr 2024, 02:29 PM IST
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