Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik, arrested by the ED in a money laundering case, was admitted to a hospital on Monday after complaining of fever and diarrhoea. His lawyer said Malik's health had deteriorated and he was in a'serious' state.
Malik 62, who was lodged in Arthur Road jail last week, had sought interim bail on medical ground from the special court for trial of criminal cases against MPs and MLAs.
When the matter came up for a hearing on Monday, Malik's lawyer Kushal Mor told the court that when the NCP leader's family went to give him home food, he was shifted to the state-run J J Hospital. Mor told the court that Malik was ill since the last three days and that his condition has deteriorated and is'serious' The lawyer prayed that Malik be moved to a private hospital, because several medical test facilities are not available at the J J Hospital.
Special judge R N Rokade expressed concern over the prison authorities not informing the court about Malik's condition and that he was taken to hospital. The matter was scheduled for a hearing on May 5, and the judge asked for a report from the hospital.
Malik had sought interim bail for six weeks on medical grounds, citing multiple illnesses, including kidney ailments and swelling in legs.
The Minister was arrested on February 23 by the Enforcement Directorate ED in connection with a money laundering probe linked to the activities of fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim and his aides, under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act PMLA He is currently in judicial custody.
The ED's case is based on an FIR filed by the National Investigation Agency NIA against Dawood Ibrahim and others.
The NIA had filed a criminal complaint under sections of the stringent Unlawful Activities Prevention Act UAPA. The ED had filed an over 5,000-page charge sheet in the case against Malik.
The NCP leader had denied all charges levelled against him and moved the Supreme Court against an order of the Bombay HC, which had rejected his interim application seeking immediate release from jail.
The Supreme Court refused to grant him any relief, noting that the probe into the case is at a nascent stage.