J. Venkatesan

Status quo order on special leave petition filed by K.Venkateswara Rao

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered status quo with regard to an order to conduct narco-analysis test on K. Venkateswara Rao, chairman and managing director of Krushi Cooperative Urban Bank Ltd., accused of cheating depositors to the tune of Rs. 36.57 crores.

A Bench of Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Justice D.K. Jain granted the status quo on a special leave petition filed by Mr. Rao challenging the High Court judgment dated August 30 and trial court's order dated October 23.

The Bench directed listing of the case for hearing on November 20.

Lie detection test

The prosecution's contention was that a case under the provisions of the Andhra Pradesh Protection of Depositors of Financial Establishment Act was registered and provisions of Indian Penal Code against Mr. Rao for offences of criminal conspiracy, cheating, misappropriation and criminal breach of trust.

On an application from the prosecution, the Metropolitan Sessions Judge granted permission to conduct the lie detection test and to record the statement of the accused .

In his SLP, Mr. Rao submitted that important questions of law of public importance were involved in the case, viz. whether the lower court was justified in holding that the willingness of the petitioner/accused by way of signing on the informed consent form was not required for conducting narco analysis test.

Pointing out that different High Courts had giving varying interpretations, he said the apex court must lay proper guidelines so as to settle the law on the issue.

He further said that narco analysis test was absolutely unnecessary in the present case as property worth more than the liability of the petitioner had already been attached.

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