Disproportionate assets case against Jayalalithaa and others

In a sudden twist in the ongoing trial of disproportionate assets case against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and others, DMK general secretary K. Anbazhagan on Tuesday filed an application before the Special Court in Bangalore seeking permission to assist the court as well as prosecution in the case.

Special Court Judge M.S. Balakrishna, before whom the application was filed, has posted the hearing on the application to Friday. He has asked the counsel for the accused and the Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) Bhavani Singh to file their objections to the application.

In his application, Mr. Anbazhagan pointed out that it was on his petition that the Supreme Court in 2003 transferred the trial to Bangalore while observing that “he was an interested party in the present case as per the Code of Criminal Procedure (Cr.PC).”

Mr. Anbazhagan cited two reasons for his need to assist the court as well as the SPP. As per Section 234 of the Cr.PC, the accused is entitled to only a reply on the completion of the arguments by the prosecution. “In the case on hand, it appears that the accused is addressing the arguments even before the prosecution has commenced its arguments. This is in clear violation of the mandate of section 234 Cr.PC and therefore illegal. The applicant apprehends that this will lead to miscarriage of justice and vitiate the final judgment that may be rendered in the case,” the application said.

“The present SPP has come into picture recently and is not fully conversant with the evidence, and also the entire facts of the case. The applicant apprehends that he will not be able to assist this court to the fullest and is handicapped by ignorance of the full and actual facts due to his recent appointment.”

The arguments commenced on August 2 as the Special Court permitted the counsel for the accused persons to begin the argument as SPP had sought some time to start arguments soon after examination of witnesses were completed during the last week of July.

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