Ahmedabad, Sep 25 (PTI) A local court on Friday rejected the application moved by Congress leader Hardik Patel seeking temporary suspension of a bail condition that restricts him from leaving Gujarat.
The court of additional sessions judge B J Ganatra rejected the plea of state Congress working president Patel seeking a 12-week suspension of the bail condition imposed on him by the same court that requires him to seek its prior permission before leaving the state.
The sessions court had imposed the condition while granting him bail in January this year following his arrest for skipping a trial court hearing in a 2015 sedition case.
In its Friday order, while rejecting Patel's plea, the court said the applicant had failed to present a reasonable ground to seek temporary suspension of the bail condition.
Patel had sought relief on the grounds that he has to frequently leave the state to fulfil his obligation as the working president of the state Congress.
The Congress leader also said that he needed to brief his lawyers in the Supreme Court regarding four cases pending before the apex court that are likely to be listed soon.
The court, in its order, observed that most of the political events are taking place through online and virtual mediums due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and hence, Patel's request to allow him to visit outside Gujarat for 12 weeks does not seem reasonable.
In light of the COVID-19 situation, there is no ground to accept that a petitioner has to meet his lawyer face to face, nor is there any immediate possibility of the four cases being listed in the apex court as mentioned by Patel in his plea, the court said.
The government had opposed the plea saying he did not present the ground on which to seek relaxation, and also pointed out that the same court had recently rejected his plea seeking cancellation of the same bail condition.
The investigating officer in the case, cyber crime police inspector R J Chaudhary, in his application, had said that Patel had breached bail conditions imposed by the Gujarat High Court and trial court on several occasions, and has not informed the police regarding the change in his address, and remained absent from hearing in the sedition case 61 times.
Patel was arrested by the Ahmedabad crime branch in January after he skipped several court proceedings in the sedition case.
The crime branch had booked Patel in a sedition case in connection with the violence which broke out in many parts of Gujarat following a rally for Patidar quota here on August 25, 2015.
Patel had led the agitation for quota for the Patidar/Patel community.
The Gujarat High Court granted him bail in that case in July 2016.
In November 2018, the trial court framed charges against him and others.
Patel joined the Congress ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. PTI KA PD ARU ARU