Legal Correspondent

``Security not allowing anyone into house, notice could not be served on Sasikalaa''

Clubbing contrary to apex court directions, says petitioner``A ploy to protract trial'' Bench says notice will have to be served

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned by eight weeks further hearing on a special leave petition filed by Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam general secretary K. Anbazhagan, challenging the Bangalore special court order clubbing the disproportionate assets and London Hotels cases against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and othersinto a single case.

The apex court in August last stayed until further orders all proceedings pending before the Bangalore court in the assets case against Ms. Jayalalithaa, N. Sasikalaa, V.N. Sudhagaran, Ilavarasi and T.T.V. Dinakaran and issued them notice.

On Friday counsel for the petitioner, V.G. Pragasam, told a Bench that the notice could not be served on Ms. Sasikalaa as security personnel were not allowing anyone inside her house. It might be served through the district judge concerned.

But the Bench, consisting of Justices B.N. Agrawal and R.V. Raveendran, said, "Once you have obtained permission for dasti (private notice) you have to serve it."

The petitioner contended that clubbing of the cases was contrary to the apex court's directions issued in November 2003, when it shifted them out of Chennai.

The SLP said the first wealth case against Ms. Jayalalithaa was in an advanced stage of trial compared to the London Hotels case.

The plea by the accused for consolidation of the two cases was a ``definite ploy'' to protract the trial.

Now after the consolidation, the accused asked for discharge from the case and the special court reserved its orders, the SLP said and sought quashing of the June 27, 2005 Bangalore court order.