The Special Court trying the disproportionate assets case against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Wednesday rejected a plea to postpone till June 2 the hearing of the final arguments on behalf of three other accused V.K. Sasikala, V.N. Sudhakaran and J. Ilavarasi.
Counsel for the accused have in their applications sought postponement of hearing saying that they had to study voluminous documents to argue the case besides taking into consideration the applications filed by some companies and firms (of which the accused were directors) claiming ownership over some of the attached property.
However, Judge John Michael Cunha refused to accept these applications while pointing out that it was not for the first time that the case was set for final arguments on behalf of the accused. The judge also said that the Supreme Court had, in Gurnaib Vs. State of Punjab, cautioned trial courts in granting liberal adjournments in criminal trials based on the requests made by advocates representing the accused.
“Trial courts shall keep in mind the statutory provisions and the interpretation placed by this court and not be guided by their own thinking or should not become mute spectators when a trial is being conducted by allowing the control to counsel for the parties. It needs no special emphasis to state that dispensation of criminal justice is not only a concern of the Bench but also the Bar. The administration of justice reflects its purity when the Bench and the Bar perform their duties with sincerity. An advocate cannot afford to bring any kind of disrespect to fairness of trial by taking recourse to subterfuges for procrastinating trial,” the Special Court recalled from the Supreme Court’s verdict.