Refusing to grant interim bail or put on hold the life imprisonment sentence of former TV anchor and serial producer Suhaib Ilyasi, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked him to approach the Delhi High Court for such relief.
Ilyasi is undergoing life sentence after being held guilty of murdering his wife Anju in 2000.
A vacation bench of Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Mohan M. Shantanagoudar asked Ilyasi’s counsel Anupam Lal Das to go back to the high court for the extension or renewal of a month-long interim bail granted to him by the high court.
As Das said that the former TV anchor has surrendered on May 25 upon the completion of the interim suspension of sentence, the court granted him the liberty to go to the high court for relief.
Dismissing Ilyasi’s plea challenging the May 14 high court order adjourning the hearing on application for the suspension of sentence to July 4 and refusing to extend interim relief, the apex court, in its order, said that “he is permitted to file another application for interim bail”.
Ilyasi was granted the month-long relief on April 26 – to take care of his ailing second wife – and it ended on May 25 when Ilyasi surrendered before the jail authorities.
Das told the court that his client was “suffering for the mischief of others”, referring to a letter by Rukma Singh – mother of deceased Anju – asking one of the judges of the high court seized of the Ilyasi’s appeal against his conviction to recuse from hearing the matter.
The high court on May 14 observed that the content of the letter prima facie constituted criminal contempt.
However, it did not take any precipitate action against Rukma Singh as her counsel said he would appropriately advise his client.
As some lawyers sought adjournment, the high court adjourned the hearing on the appeal by Ilyasi against his conviction to July 4.
Das on Thursday told the top court that Ilyasi’s appeal was set out for hearing on May 14 but because of the letter by Rukma Singh, it was deferred.
Ilyasi – the host of yesteryear serial “India’s Most Wanted” – was convicted of murdering his wife and sentenced to life imprisonment by a Delhi court.
Anju was found murdered at her marital home in east Delhi on January 11, 2000. Ilyasi was arrested on March 28.
Initially, Ilyasi was booked for charges of subjecting his wife to cruelty, dowry death and destruction of evidence. But the Delhi High Court in 2014 ordered that Ilyasi be tried for murder.