Prosecution seeks cancellation of bail granted to Jayalalithaa, others

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and other accused in the disproportionate assets case on Monday made a plea to the special court, which is trying the case, to keep the proceedings in abeyance contending that the appointment of the judge to the special court in 2009 was “not made as per the law”.

In their petitions, filed before the special court, the accused have claimed that the appointment of the judge, B.M. Mallikarjunaiah, was made without issuing a gazette notification as prescribed in Section 3(1) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

They claimed that the State government had issued a notification on December 27, 2003 appointing A.S. Pachhapure as the judge of the special court by issuing a notification in the gazette.

However, after Mr. Pachhapure’s elevation as a judge of the High Court, the post of judge of the special court was filled by way of a transfer posting, the accused have said in their petitions while pointing out that the present judge, Mr. Mallikarjunaiah, was appointed on August 3, 2009.

The accused claimed that they recently came to know that no notification under the Act was issued before appointing Mr. Mallikarjunaiah as judge of the special court in August 2009.

This, according to the accused, has resulted in nullity of all proceedings before the special court from August 2009 when Mr. Mallikajunaiah assumed the office as judge. Claiming that continuation of proceedings would result in miscarriage of justice, they have requested Mr. Mallikarjunaiah to keep in abeyance all proceedings until the Karnataka government issues a gazette notification in consultation with the High Court as per the Act.

None of the accused appeared before the special court on Monday citing different reasons. Sandesh J. Chouta, assistant to the Special Public Prosecutor, sought cancellation of bail granted to the accused for not appearing before the court for proceedings and as they were violating conditions imposed on them before the bail was granted. Mr. Chouta claimed that the accused had frequently abstained from proceedings of late citing medical reasons due to which the special court was unable to conduct the proceedings, in particular continue with the recording of statement of Ms. Sasikala under Section 313 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.