As videos of alleged VIP treatment of him in Tihar jail go viral, jailed Delhi Aam Aadmi party minister Satyendar Jain told a magistrate’s court on Tuesday that he had not even received “appropriate” food or medical supervision. He lost around 28kg in custody, his lawyer, lead attorney Rahul Mehra, said.
Special Judge Vikas Dhull was hearing arguments on Satyendar Jain’s plea of contempt against central investigative agency ED over the alleged leak of footage from inside his prison cell to the media. The court scheduled the case for November 28 for detailed arguments.
Mr. Jain’s lawyer also argued that the Law Enforcement Branch, which is investigating Mr. Jain’s money laundering allegations, is leaking sensitive information to the media despite court orders. “I am defamed every minute by their act,” said the lawyer, speaking on behalf of Mr Jain.
“Even Ajmal Kasab got a free and fair trial,” he said, referring to the Pakistani terrorist hanged for the 26/11 attack in Mumbai. “I sure am no worse than that. All I ask is a free and fair trial. Please watch the kind of media reports that go against [Satyendar Jain] and it’s in [the agencies’] interest,” he said.
He also denied ED claims that he was given privileged treatment. “What privilege are they talking about…I lost 28kg in prison. Is that what a privileged person gets in prison? I don’t even get proper food…No rule of jail is only breached if a subtrial pressures his hand or feet,” he said.
The argument specifically referred to viral videos of Mr Jain receiving massages in prison, and the AAP’s claim that these were “mandatory physiotherapy sessions as part of his treatment”.
The AAP has repeatedly said that the central agency ED has been misused by the BJP government to keep Mr Jain in jail since June.
But the ‘physiotherapy’ claims were badly damaged earlier today as sources said the ‘masseur’ is a prisoner awaiting trial, a rape accused.
In court, ED’s lawyer, Zohaib Hossain, said Satyendar Jain had been counseled in physiotherapy and was therefore following her. He clarified that there is “not a single leak” by the central agency. “We will ensure that the culprits are brought to justice,” the lawyer said.
ED also said the footage from the jail cell was given to Mr Jain’s team in a USB stick.
Mr. Jain, through his lawyer, maintained that they (the agencies) have already put him on the gallows. The lawyer also showed screenshots of several prominent channels broadcasting “leaked” copies of the responses to be filed in court.
The court adjourned the case as Additional Solicitor General (ASG) SV Raju, who is leading the case for ED, was not present due to personal reasons.
(With ANI inputs)