Judge Nutan Sardessai of the Special Court, Margao in south Goa, on Wednesday issued notice, under the Prevention of Corruption Act, to the Secretary of the Goa Legislative Assembly seeking a report on the privilege notice moved against Adv. Aires Rodrigues in connection with a disproportionate assets case filed by the latter against Speaker of the Goa Legislative Assembly.
Judge Nutan Sardessai issued the direction after Adv. Rodrigues submitted before the Court on Wednesday that contempt of Court proceedings be initiated as the statements and conduct of Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar and Speaker Rajendra Arlekar while the proceedings were pending in Court amounted to intimidatory tactics and direct interference in the administration of justice.
Adv. Rodrigues, in his application, stated that while proceedings are pending before the Court, it was neither proper nor desirable for any person, to make any comment on pending proceedings while seeking to lower the majesty and dignity of the Courts.
Pointing out that while the Court proceedings were pending, Mr. Arlekar was misusing his position as Speaker to intimidate and threaten him, Adv. Rodrigues has also submitted to the Court newspaper cuttings of statements made by Chief Minister Parrikar and of the notice of privilege moved.
Directing the Secretary of the Goa Legislative Assembly to file the reply on March 24, Judge has also directed the Anti- Corruption Branch (ACB) of Goa Vigilance to file their reply to the application moved by Adv. Rodrigues seeking contempt of Court proceedings.
In another application moved on Wednesday, Adv. Aires Rodrigues submitted before the Judge that the ACB officers were acting as caged parrots and dragging their feet in the investigation of the original case against Speaker Arlekar.
To ensure a free and fair probe, he sought that the case be handed over to the Crime Branch of the State Police and that the investigation be carried out by an officer of the rank of Superintendent of Police. Judge Sardessai has directed the ACB to file their reply on March 24.
In the recently concluded brief budget session of the State Legislative Assembly, the Speaker has referred two notices of breach of privilege moved by BJP legislator Ganesh Gaonkar against Adv. Rodrigues pertaining to Speaker Arlekar's "disproportionate assets case involving his land purchase", to the Privileges Committee of the House.