KARNATAKA

Jayalalithaa to move Madras High Court

ANOTHER HEARING: N. Jyothi (second from right), counsel for the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, J. Jayalalithaa, arriving at the city civil court in Bangalore on Saturday. — Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

ANOTHER HEARING: N. Jyothi (second from right), counsel for the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, J. Jayalalithaa, arriving at the city civil court in Bangalore on Saturday. — Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy  

B.S. Ramesh

BANGALORE: The Jayalalithaa wealth cases on Saturday took a new turn with counsel for the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa, stating that his client will move an application before the Madras High Court on June 13 seeking its opinion on the clubbing of the two cases.

He made the statement before the Special Court hearing the Rs. 66.65-crore disproportionate assets case and the London Hotels case in which Ms. Jayalalithaa is one of the accused.

Concluding his arguments seeking clubbing of the cases, Mr. Jyothi said he had consulted his client and they decided to file an application before the Madras High Court as soon as it reopened after summer vacation.

The application is to urge the court to indicate its opinion on whether the two cases should be clubbed or tried separately.

On January 10, 2002, the Madras High Court had given two options: to either club the cases or try them separately.

While the four accused in the first case, Jayalalithaa, Sasikala, V.N. Sudhagaran and Illavarasi, and the two accused in the second case, Jayalalithaa and T.T.V. Dinakaran, wanted clubbing of the cases, the prosecution opposed it, saying that since the wealth case had progressed to a certain extent, it would be inappropriate to club them. Moreover, clubbing would obliterate all earlier proceedings and further delay the trial.

With both the parties sticking to their stand and citing the Madras High Court order in their favour, the Special Judge, A.S. Pachhapure, had, on the last occasion, asked Mr. Jyothi if he could file an application in the Madras High Court and seek its opinion on the issue.

He said that as soon as the High Court gave its opinion he would communicate it to the Special Court.

The Special Public Prosecutor, B.V. Acharya, said he has no objection to the matter being again raised in the High Court.

Earlier, P. Kumar, advocate for Mr. Dinakaran, filed an application urging the court to return the documents in the London Hotels case, including the First Information Report (FIR) and the report to the prosecution to enable it to form an opinion on whether to go ahead with the case.

He said summons was issued to his client only after the case was transferred to the Special Court in Bangalore.

After the Madras High Court had ordered the transfer of the London Hotels case to the Special Court trying the Rs. 66.65-crore assets case, there was no summons or communication from the court.

He said it is not for the prosecution to oppose the applications by the accused seeking clubbing of the cases. The court would have to decide on it, he said.

Mr. Acharya said Mr. Kumar's plea for giving back the papers could not be conceded as the Madras High Court had given only two options — club the cases or try them separately. There is, therefore, no third option.

The judge adjourned the case till June 9.

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