Jailed NCP legislators Nawab Malik and Anil Deshmukh on Monday approached the Bombay High Court seeking to be released from prison for a day on June 20 to cast their vote in elections to the Maharashtra Legislative Council.
Mr Deshmukh and Mr Malik, both members of the Legislative Assembly, could not cast their vote in the Rajya Sabha elections held on June 10 after a special court refused to release them to take part in the poll process.
The duo has now sought to be released from jail for one day on June 20 to vote in MLC elections.
Mr Deshmukh, a former home minister of Maharashtra, filed an application for one day release from prison in his bail plea submitted earlier this year. The NCP leader's application was mentioned by his advocate Inderpal Singh before a single bench of Justice NJ Jamadar.
Justice Jamadar posted the matter for hearing on June 15.
The plea of Mr Malik, a sitting cabinet minister, was mentioned before a single bench of Justice Bharati Dangre. His lawyer Kushal Mor sought permission to get Mr Malik's plea tagged with MrDeshmukh's application and for both the matters to be heard on June 15 by Justice Jamadar.
Justice Dangre asked Mor to mention the matter on June 14 (Tuesday).
Mr Malik's lawyers Taraq Sayed and Kushal Mor had initially sought to amend an earlier petition filed by the state minister challenging a special court order refusing to release him on June 10 for voting in the Rajya Sabha polls.
Sayed told a single bench of Justice PD Naik that the prayers are still the same and that only the date would have to be amended from June 10 to June 20.
Justice Naik, however, noted that the cause of action was different and that Malik's earlier petition had become infructuous as the elections he wanted to vote in (Rajya Sabha) was over.
“You (Malik) will have to file a fresh plea seeking to be released on June 20 for the MLC elections,” Justice Naik said, indicating he was not inclined to allow the amendment.
Mr Malik's lawyers then withdrew the earlier petition and said they would file a fresh one.
Mr Malik was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on February 23 this year in connection with a money laundering probe linked to the activities of fugitive underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and his aides.
His party colleague Mr Deshmukh was arrested in November 2021 by the ED on money laundering charges.
The biennial elections for 10 vacant seats of the Upper House of the state Legislature will be held on next Monday. Members of the state Legislative Assembly constitute the electoral college for these polls.
Eleven candidates are in the fray. The opposition BJP has fielded five candidates, while the Shiv Sena, the NCP and the Congress, all constituents of the ruling MVA, have given tickets to two nominees each.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)