The Special Bench of Karnataka High Court today warned DMK General Secretary K Anbazhagan of action for contempt of court for disturbing court proceedings after he submitted a memo seeking removal of SPP Bhavani Singh from hearing of appeals filed by former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and three others, challenging their conviction in the disproportionate assets case.
“Do not disturb the court proceedings by submitting a memo, asking for removal of the SPP, instead the prosecution (Anbazhagan) should get an order copy from the High Court as my job is only to hear the appeals filed by Jayalalithaa and three others challenging their conviction,” Justice Kumaraswamy said. The Special Bench has been set up after the Supreme Court on December 18 last directed the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court to constitute it to decide Jayalalithaa’s plea within three months.
If Anbazhagan does not follow the norms, the court would take action against him under the provisions of Section 345 of the Criminal Procedure Act, Justice Kumaraswamy said. As soon as the Special Bench began third day of the hearing, Anbazhagan’s counsel Saravanan submitted a memo before Justice Kumaraswamy seeking removal of Singh in the case as he was not appointed by the government but Chennai-based Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption.
Justice Kumaraswamy admitted the petition filed by Anbazhagan seeking permission before the Special Bench to intervene as party respondent to assist SPP in the case. Anbazhagan had submitted that he had intervened before the appropriate courts at all stages of the trial “to ensure that justice is not derailed by powerful persons” who were tried for serious corruption charges.
Justice Kumaraswamy directed the counsel of Jayalalithaa to file objections against Anbazhagan’s petition seeking permission to intervene as party respondent to assist SPP in the case.
An apex court bench, headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu, had ordered that the hearing in the High Court on the appeal, filed by Jayalalithaa challenging her conviction and sentence in the case, be conducted on a day-to-day basis. On October 17 last year, the apex court had granted conditional bail to Jayalalithaa, who was sent to jail by a trial court on Sept 27, saying that hearing on her appeal against conviction in the High Court should be completed in three months from December 18. The special court had held Jayalalithaa and three others guilty of corruption.
The court had awarded four years jail term and also slapped a fine of Rs 100 crore on the AIADMK chief. The court also slapped a fine of Rs 10 crore fine on each of the three other convicts.