SC grants bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh in money laundering case

Sanjay Singh was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with a money laundering case linked to alleged Delhi excise policy scam.

SC grants bail to AAP leader Sanjay Singh in money laundering case

Sanjay Singh smiles while being taken away by ED officials. (Photo:Twitter/AAP)

In a big relief to Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh, the Supreme Court on Tuesday granted him bail in an alleged money laundering case. Singh has been in incarceration since October 4, 2023.

Granting bail to Sanjay Singh, a bench of Justice Sanjiv Khanna, Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Prasanna B. Varale said, “We are granting bail to Sanjay Singh. Sanjay Singh to be released during the pendency of trial.”

The court said that Sanjay Singh may continue with his political activities.


The bench refrained Sanjay Singh from making any comment about his role or anything related to Delhi liquor scam case.

Granting bail to Sanjay Singh, the court noted that no money has been recovered from him and there is no trace of money.

In the hearing today, the Additional Solicitor General (ASG) S.V. Raju, appearing for the Enforcement Directorate, said that the central probe agency had no objections if Sanjay Singh is released on bail in proceedings arising out of First Information Report (FIR) and in PMLA case.

“In view of the statement made, we allow the present appeal (seeking bail) and direct that Sanjay Singh be released on bail during pendency of trial on terms and conditions set by the trial court,” the bench said in its order.

In the course of the hearing Justice Khanna told ASG Raju, “You have kept him in custody for six months. Dinesh Arora has not initially implicated him. Later on, in a statement, he does. No money has been recovered, the trace of money is not there … Please keep it in mind … we are required to record in terms of Section 45 that he has prima facie not committed the offence. That could have its ramifications in trial.”

In the pre-lunch session, the bench had asked the ASG Raju to take instructions from the ED if the further custody of Sanjay Singh was required. In the post-lunch session ASG Raju told the bench that though ED has an arguable case against Sanjay Singh but he may be granted bail.

The Enforcement Directorate nodded for the grant of bail to Sanjay Singh in the wake of observations from the bench.

Justice Datta told ASG Raju that if they decide to grant bail to Sanjay Singh on merits then under the mandate of Section 45 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, they may have to observe in his favour.

“Mr Raju, please keep in mind we have to as per Section 45 observe in favour of the petitioner, please understand the implications of that during trial. So, get instructions on whether you need further custody”, Justice Datta said in a note of caution asking ASG Raju to take instructions.

The Section 45 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, says that no person accused of an offence under PMLA shall be released on bail or on his own bond unless the Public Prosecutor has been given an opportunity to oppose the application for bail.

It further says that if, despite opposition by the Public Prosecutor, an accused under PMLA can be granted bail if the court is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for believing that he is not guilty of such offence and that he is not likely to commit any offence while on bail.

The top court had on February 26, 2024, issued notice to the Enforcement Directorate and sought response from the anti-money laundering agency on the bail plea by Sanjay Singh.

Sanjay Singh had approached the top court against February 7, 2024, Delhi High Court order denying him bail. The High Court had noted that prima facie he seemed to be involved in the offences. The Delhi High Court on October 20 had also rejected Singh’s plea challenging his arrest. Sanjay Singh had moved the High Court after the trial court dismissed his bail on December 22, 2023.

Sanjay Singh was arrested by the ED on October 4, 2023, after it conducted a search at his residence. He has been in judicial custody since October 13, 2023.

The ED has alleged that Sanjay Singh was part of the criminal conspiracy of allegedly collecting kickbacks from the liquor groups in the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22.

The anti-money laundering agency had further said that Singh has close relationship with liquor businessman Dinesh Arora, a key witness who was earlier accused by the CBI and the ED and later turned approver in the case. Their relation goes back to 2017 as revealed by the latter as well as from his call records.

Singh had allegedly received proceeds of crime to the tune of Rs 2 crores in the ‘liquor scam’ on two occasions, the ED has stated.