The Special Court trying the disproportionate assets case against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Thursday described as “not fair” the action of the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC), Chennai, in directly writing a letter to the judge intimating that further investigation of the case had been taken up.
In his order, B.M. Mallikarjunaiah, Judge of the Special Court and the 36th Additional City Civil and Sessions Court, directed the DVAC to file such communications only through the Special Public Prosecutor (SPP).
The court decided to ignore the letter written by the DVAC. The court also accepted the unconditional apology submitted by DVAC Deputy Superintendent of Police G. Sambandam, who had written the letter (which was in the form of an application under Section 173(8) of Code of Criminal Procedure to intimate the court about further investigation) on behalf of the DVAC as newly appointed investigating officer of the case and condoned his action.
The court had earlier expressed displeasure with the action of the DVAC in writing the letter, on June 15, directly to the judge while by-passing the SPP, who represents the DVAC.Meanwhile, B. Kumar, senior counsel, who is now representing Ms. Jayalalithaa, sought four weeks time stating that he had to study the case as he had taken over from previous senior counsel, Navaneethakrishnan, who was appointed Advocate-General of Tamil Nadu on May 23. However, Sandesh J. Chouta, counsel assisting the Special Public Prosecutor, objected to grant of time while contending that changing of counsel was a move to delay proceedings.
Mr. Chouta argued that this is the third senior counsel appearing for Ms. Jayalalithaa since trial commenced in Bangalore and every such time, time was sought by new counsel for preparation with an “intention to delay” proceedings. The judge adjourned proceedings to July 8 to enable new counsel to prepare for the case.