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Updated: January 6, 2012 11:49 IST

Non-bailable warrant against Jayalalithaa stayed

S. Vijay Kumar
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Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa is facing a criminal case for alleged violation of the law by filing nominations from four constituencies during the 2001 elections.
The Hindu
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa is facing a criminal case for alleged violation of the law by filing nominations from four constituencies during the 2001 elections.

Supreme Court had ordered ‘status quo' in the case on July 10, 2007

The Principal Sessions Judge of Cuddalore district on Thursday stayed a non-bailable warrant ordered by a lower court against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in a case filed against her at the instance of the Election Commission in 2007.

The Supreme Court had ordered on July 10, 2007 that ‘status quo' be maintained in the case, effectively staying the criminal proceedings against Ms. Jayalalithaa before the Judicial Magistrate, Parangipettai, in Cuddalore district.

However, the magistrate had ordered the issue of an NBW against her for non-appearance in court on June 27, 2011. At the same time, the magistrate stayed the NBW, but did not dispense with the Chief Minister's personal appearance. The woman magistrate had kept the NBW pending without issuing it until December 30, 2011.

When the matter came up before the magistrate on January 4, she said: “Accused called absent — NBW pending, but not issued; SC matter stayed —Call on February 16, 2012.” The order implied that the warrant was alive and the court was insisting on Ms. Jayalalithaa's appearance before it.

Aggrieved by the order, Ms. Jayalalithaa, through her counsel, filed a petition before the Principal Sessions Judge in Cuddalore on Thursday, seeking a stay on the lower court's order and pleading that the warrant be withdrawn.

Saying that the petitioner came to know of the warrant order only on January 4, 2012, counsel for Ms. Jayalalithaa said: “Since the entire proceedings [in the case] had been stayed by the Supreme Court, issue of warrant against the petitioner was illegal in the eye of law.”

Pointing to the Supreme Court's status quo order, counsel for Ms. Jayalalithaa said no notice or summons was issued to the petitioner. “The petitioner was neither wilful nor wanton in not appearing before the lower court.”

Principal Sessions Judge K. Uthirapathy stayed the June 27, 2011 order until January 19, 2012.

The matter pertains to a case filed by the Returning Officer of the Bhuvanagiri Assembly constituency for alleged violation of the law in her filing nominations from the Andipatti, Krishnagiri, Bhuvanagiri and Pudukottai constituencies ahead of the 2001 elections.

High Court order

The proceedings began when C. Kuppuswamy, then a Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Member of Parliament, moved the Madras High Court seeking action against her on the ground that she had committed an offence by filing papers from more than two constituencies. In June 2007, the High Court had directed the Election Commission of India to file cases in appropriate courts.

A complaint was preferred against Ms. Jayalalithaa by A.G. Selvamani, the then Returning Officer of the Bhuvanagiri constituency, under the provisions of the Representation of the People Act and the Indian Penal Code.

Ms. Jayalalithaa moved the Supreme Court against the High Court's order, and on July 9, 2007, the Supreme Court passed the order of status quo.

During the hearing before the Supreme Court in September 2007, the Election Commission informed the court that no action was called for against Ms. Jayalalithaa pertaining to her filing nominations from four constituencies. The Returning Officers (of the Bhuvanagiri and Pudukottai constituencies) had said Ms. Jayalalithaa had not suppressed any information, as the declarations filed by her earlier in Andipatti and Krishnagiri were made available to them, and hence no action was called for. Moreover, these two nominations were rejected. As it was the Returning Officer who had to decide whether a “false declaration” had been made by a candidate, no action was necessitated under Section 177 of the IPC (furnishing false information before a public servant).

The case is still pending before the Supreme Court, and the next hearing has been fixed for March 14, 2012.

(With inputs from A.V. Ragunathan in Cuddalore)

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I don't understand. What JJ had done is a flaw, a misjudgment or whatever one may call it, but not a Crime. If she was ineligible to file four nominations , two could have been rejected; even all of them. But where is the crime? If the electoral law says it is a crime and under what section of the IP Code, then and only then would all this hullabaloo have some meaning.

from:  Veevip Sarathy
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 22:44 IST

A leader of immense potential, knowledge and experience Ms.Jayalalithaa is the most deserving candidate to play a crucial role in central goverment. India requires a person of her calibre and maturity to play an important role in centre to overcome the problems the country is facing right now from corruption, terrorism and threats from China, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. For a bright and secured future we need A.P.J Abdul Kalam to be the president and Ms. Jayalalitha to be the prime minister or home minister or atleast defence minister.

from:  leo
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 22:38 IST

Ms.Jayalalithaa has been given a massive mandate by the people of Tamilnadu. Further she has made a concerted effort in cleansing her personal affairs which has since been made public much to the happiness of the public at large. She now means business. She is a Visionary. Acquit her in all these frivolous cases and allow her to do her work in peace.

from:  Soora L Ramgopal
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 13:16 IST

If the law doesnt allow the person to file two nomination in two different places, then election commision should reject the nomination, even if the nomination is filed,the election commosion can cancel the nomination,during nomination if false document is given for nominating in election, then it would be the legal issue.

from:  henry
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 12:20 IST

According to the Representation of People Act 1951, Section 33(b), this is violation and her nomination was by itself void and subject to rejection. This is a blatant violation yet there is a delay in taking action against the accused. These sorts of biased actions give rise to speculations that whether our Indian Judiciary is non biased! In many instances, our honorable Supreme Court has given milestone verdicts, which are case studies for international courts. It is highly commendable that Supreme court was very much keen in prosecuting those involved in 2g spectrum irregularities, but its delay in cases like this gives rise to unavoidable questions like - is Judiciary doing its job only when it comes to prosecuting lower castes and not for upper(uppest - i would say, if there was such a word) castes? I know this comment wouldn't be published for sure?!

from:  Vikraman
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 11:11 IST

It was explicit why Jaya submitted nominations in 4 constituency at 2001 general election. There was a case against her and she knows that election commision will reject her nomination to contesting in election. So to blackout the episode of the rejection , She filed in 4 constituencies to make herself to non eligiblity and created a situation to reject the nomination on eligibility grounds.As she is CM Now , There is no point on taking this case back again and proceed for further hearings.I think Court could acquit her from these cases and allow her to concentrate on daily businesses.

from:  Vijayasankar R
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 07:26 IST

The common man who is not well versed in legal technicalities will be baffled by the waste of human resources with such long winding legal proceedings. This prolonging issue relates to the filing of more than two nominations. The EC informed the court that no action was called for against Ms.Jayalalithaa. The matter should have ended there. Now another election was duly held in 2011,and the same candidate has become the Chief Minister with absolute majority. How long will this legal tussle go on? With instances like this what is the point in grumbling about the lakhs of pending cases that call for quicker disposal?

from:  Shekar
Posted on: Jan 6, 2012 at 07:13 IST
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