SC stays any coercive action against Avinash in Vivekananda Reddy murder case

Bench led by CJI Chandrachud further found directions in an April 18 order of Telangana High Court providing interim protection to the Kadapa MP “atrocious”

Updated - April 22, 2023 11:03 am IST

Published - April 22, 2023 02:58 am IST - NEW DELHI

The Supreme Court on Friday, April 21, 2023, stayed any coercive action from being taken against Lok Sabha member Y.S. Avinash Reddy in the murder of former Andhra Pradesh Minister Y.S. Vivekananda Reddy.

A Bench led by Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud further found directions in an April 18 order of the Telangana High Court, providing interim protection to the Kadapa MP “atrocious”.

The court has listed the case for detailed hearing on April 24.

The protection against coercive action was given after senior advocate Ranjit Kumar said the MP would be at the present moment with the CBI, and they may arrest him if the apex court sets aside the High Court order.

“Issue notice. List on Monday. There shall be a stay of the impugned directions contained in paragraph 18 of the impugned order of the High Court. However, till Monday the CBI shall not arrest him,” the Bench ordered.

The order was passed in a petition filed by Dr. Suneetha Narreddy, the daughter of the killed former Minister, who had challenged the High Court decision to grant Mr. Avinash Reddy protection.

Crucial stage

“Investigation is at a crucial stage where the CBI is investigating the alleged larger conspiracy as directed by the Supreme Court. For this, the CBI should be allowed to investigate freely without any restriction. Moreover, the High Court has practically derailed the investigation process at this crucial juncture without giving due importance to the date of April 30, by which time the CBI is required to conclude the investigation,” the plea has stated.

The former Minister was an uncle of the current Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jaganmohan Reddy. He was found stabbed to death at his residence in Pulivendula, Kadapa district, in March 2019.

In November 2022, the Supreme Court had transferred the trial and probe into the larger conspiracy behind the murder to a CBI court in Hyderabad.

“The petitioners being the daughter and wife of the deceased have a fundamental right to get justice as victims… they have legitimate expectation that the criminal trial is conducted in a fair manner,” the court had observed in a judgment.

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