T.N. Minister Senthilbalaji arrest | Madras High Court agrees to hear habeas corpus petition by Minister’s wife

Tamil Nadu Electricity Minister V. Senthilbalaji was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on early hours of June 14 in connection with a money laundering case

Updated - June 15, 2023 12:59 pm IST

Published - June 15, 2023 11:50 am IST - CHENNAI

A view of the Madras High Court building in Chennai. File

A view of the Madras High Court building in Chennai. File | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

The Madras High Court on Thursday, June 15, 2023 accepted a request made on behalf of Minister for Electricity, Prohibition and Excise V. Senthilbalaji’s wife, for an urgent hearing of a habeas corpus petition filed by her accusing the Enforcement Directorate (ED) of not having followed due procedure while arresting her husband early on Wednesday.

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Mr. Senthilbalaji was remanded to judicial custody till June 28. His arrest followed 18 hours of investigation, and searches conducted by the ED and his office at the State secretariat as well as premises linked to him, in connection with a money laundering case

Justices J. Nisha Banu and D. Bharatha Chakravarthy acceded to the plea for urgent hearing made by Senior Counsel N.R. Elango who said, though the HCP ought to have been filed before the portfolio Bench of Justices M. Sundar and R. Sakthivel, the second judge in that Bench had, on Wednesday, said that he wanted to recuse from hearing the matter.

Since any case that could not be listed before the Bench led by Justice Sundar, for reasons such as recusal, need to be be listed before the other Division Bench led by Justice Banu as per the standing instructions issued by the Chief Justice, the Senior Counsel asked the the latter Bench to take up the matter on Thursday, June 15, 2023 itself, considering the urgency involved.

Justice Banu accepted the request and said that the HCP would be taken up at the end of their causelist for the day.

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