The contrast is too apparent to be missed. Two Chief Ministers - Arvind Kejriwal and Hemant Soren, who represented Delhi and Jharkhand states respectively, were booked and jailed by one central agency -the Enforcement Directorate - on money laundering cases. 

The ED served ten summons to Kejriwal in liquor scam case, who did not appear once. After he was arrested and jailed, he did not quit the post of CM. 

Unlike Kejriwal, Soren responded to the ED’s summon twice and appeared before the ED for questioning at its Ranchi office. Also, before getting arrested by the ED, Soren resigned from the post of the CM.  

The merit of judicial pronouncement notwithstanding, the Supreme Court appears to have treated them differently. 

For one, Kejriwal was granted interim bail till June 1 whereas Soren is yet to get the bail and thereby remains in jail. 

 Records revealed that the Aam Aadmi Party boss - Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21 in the alleged Delhi liquor excise policy scam. 

Alongside, the apex court disposed of Soren’s plea noting that he may raise all pleas and contentions in his other petition challenging the May 3, 2024, High Court order. 

The Jharkhand High Court in its May 3 order had rejected Soren's plea challenging arrest in a money laundering case. Soren was arrested by the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) in the land scam case on January 1. 

The probe against Soren pertains to huge amounts of proceeds of crime generated by forging official records by showing 'fake sellers' and purchasers in the guise of forged or bogus documents to acquire huge parcels of land valued in crores. 

“Power to grant interim bail is commonly exercised in a number of cases. Interim bail is granted in the facts of each case. This case is not an exception,” the SC order said on Friday. 

Yet, two different judgements delivered by the SC on two CMs - Kejriwal and Soren- who were accused of money laundering cases slapped on them by one central agency -the ED, have raised many an eyebrow. 

Consider the varying responses of people and political parties. In Delhi, as the news spread like wildfire, Kejriwal’s party AAP termed it a "triumph of truth".

Taking to microblogging platform X (formerly known as Twitter), Kejriwal's wife Sunita posted in Hindi, "Hanuman ji ki jai. 

This is the victory of democracy. It is the result of the prayers and blessings of millions of people. Many thanks to everyone." In Jharkhand, the scene was different. “ The Supreme Court has exposed itself to the charge that its judges were biased. 

They don’t deliver judgement on the basis of objective criteria of evidence.” “ I have studied the statements made by judges of the top court who delivered judgements on the Kejriwal and Soren cases. They are biased and don’t deserve to be what they are.”

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