A court was told on Monday that the investigation in one of the two cases booked by Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in the cash-for-bail scam involving former Karnataka Minister Gali Janardhan Reddy was completed and that was why the sanction of the State government for prosecution of two accused judges was secured.
The ACB had last week filed the charge-sheet in court against the two judges – D. Prabhakar Rao and K. Lakshmi Narasimha Rao – and five others, including Janardhan Reddy, under provisions of IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act. It was under the PC Act that the government subsequently granted sanction to ACB to prosecute the judges.
The ACB is yet to get sanction against another judge T. Pattabhirama Rao who bailed out Janardhan Reddy as he is accused in the other case where investigation is still on.
The announcement about closure of investigation in the second case was made by Public Prosecutor H. Venkatesh during arguments in the bail application of Lakshmi Narasimha Rao. He said the probe was expedited as there was more direct evidence against Lakshmi Narasimha Rao and Prabhakar Rao than the others. The prosecution was able to show prima facie guilt of the two.
He said there was a strong circumstantial evidence to show Lakshmi Narasimha Rao offered Rs. 40 crore to the previous judge B. Nagamaruti Sarma who spurned the offer. Mr. Sarma’s statement tilted the scales in favour of prosecution. It was corroborated by Pattabhirama Rao and the telephonic conversation between the accused.
Mr. Venkatesh expressed apprehension that Prabhakar Rao and Lakshmi Narasimha Rao would set up obstacles to the trial if they were granted bail. There was no delay on the part of prosecution to commence trail. The defence lawyer C. Padmanabha Reddy said there was no incriminating material against his client because telephone call details by themselves could not prove anything and they were sought to be corroborated with confessional statements which were not admissible in court.