The Bombay High Court on Friday, 10 June, refused to entertain the petition of Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik who sought to vote in the Rajya Sabha elections, polling for which is underway till 4 pm.
This comes hours after another bench of the court had refused to grant immediate permission to Malik, but allowed him to approach another bench with an amended plea.
Malik, who is presently lodged in judicial custody, had moved the court earlier in the day seeking permission to vote in the crucial polls, in which six seats from Maharashtra are at stake. This came after a special Bombay court had rejected the minister's plea.
"The special court's order will have to be quashed (if any relief was to be granted)," Justice Bharati Dangre said while refusing the plea on Friday afternoon, as per news agency PTI.
Malik had sought that he be either released from custody on a bond or be permitted to go with a police escort to the Vidhan Bhavan for voting.
What Happened in the Morning Hearing?
A single bench of the Bombay High Court, presided over by Justice PD Naik, on Friday said that although Malik had avoided the use of the word 'bail,' the tenor of his plea was that of seeking bail and therefore, he must file an appeal challenging the special court that denied him temporary bail.
The high court said it didn't wish to set a wrong precedent by entertaining Malik's plea, and permitted the minister's counsel to amend the plea approach with an amended application before an appropriate bench.
Former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh was also denied permission to be released for voting, as per NDTV. The two politicians are lodged in custody in two separate money laundering cases.
Malik had mentioned his plea seeking urgent hearing in the HC after a special court rejected on Thursday his plea seeking that he either be released on temporary bail for a day or that he be permitted to go with an escort to cast his vote.
What Happened During the Special Court Hearing?
On Thursday, Enforcement Directorate had told Special Judge RS Rokade hearing the case that Deshmukh is the main accused in a money laundering case and cannot demand voting rights as a prisoner under the Peoples Representation Act.
However, both Deshmukh and Malik had challenged the special court's order in the Bombay High Court and sought permission to vote. The Bombay High Court had refused to grant an urgent hearing on Thursday.
In the crucial RS polls, every vote is crucial for the Shiv Sena-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), of which the NCP is a constituent, to get the Sena's second candidate Sanjay Pawar elected.