Top Court Dismisses Hemant Soren’s Plea Against Arrest

Hemant Soren was arrested late Wednesday night.

New Delhi:

The Supreme Court today dismissed former Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren’s petition challenging his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate on money laundering charges.

“We are not interfering, go to the High Court,” the Supreme Court said.

Hemant Soren was arrested late Wednesday night. He has been sent to judicial custody for one day, with a definitive ruling on the central agency’s request for 10-day custody expected today.

In his petition, Hemant Soren contended before the Supreme Court that the agency had “abused its power and acted in a malafide manner to destabilise a democratically-elected state government”.

He also called his arrest “illegal and without jurisdiction” “The ED is brazenly acting under the (diktats) of the central government and hounding the petitioner to destabilise a democratically-elected government headed by the petitioner,” he said.

The Enforcement Directorate has alleged that Hemant Soren is involved in a Rs 600-crore land scam and the laundering of its proceeds.

Meanwhile, Champai Soren, veteran leader of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, will take oath today as the next Chief Minister of Jharkhand today.

Champai Soren met Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan in Ranchi yesterday and urged him to invite him to form the next state government. “We have submitted the report with 43 MLAs in our support. We expect the number will reach 46-47. Our ‘gathbandhan’, or alliance, is very strong,” Champai Soren said after meeting the Governor.

Sources said the Governor was also shown a 49-second roll-call video of all MLAs backing Mr Soren, who is a senior member of the JMM and a seven-time MLA.

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