Court asks Himanshu's lawyers whether Memon will be PP

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Nagpur, Apr 29 (UNI) A trial court, hearing the high-profile Prof H S Sabharwal murder case, today asked his son Himanshu's counsel to inform by May 3 whether noted lawyer Majid Memon was willing to be the special public prosecutor (PP) in the matter.

District Judge II B A Shaikh, who is hearing the case, also directed the counsel to ensure that the appointment order of the special PP reached Mr Memon as soon as possible.

Earlier, counsel for Mr Himanshu told the court that Mr Memon had not yet decided whether to accept the appointment, and that he would make the decision only after receiving the official appointment order.

Principal District and Sessions Judge T V Nalavade had finalised Mr Memon's name as special PP for the case last Friday. The judge named Mr Memon from among the two names each proposed by Mr Himanshu and the Government of Madhya Pradesh.

The case is being heard before a sessions court here after it was transferred from Ujjain to Nagpur on the directives of the Supreme Court.

When the hearing resumed on April 17 last, Mr Shaikh had allowed all the six accused in the case to return to Ujjain and posted the hearing for today. The six accused - Hemant Dube, Pankaj Mishra, Vishal Rajore, Sudhir Yadav, Shashiranjan Akela and Vinod Tomar - are facing charges in two other related cases being heard in a court in Ujjain.

Prof Sabharwal died after being allegedly assaulted by activists of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in the premises of Madhav College in Ujjain on August 26, 2006. The assault took place after the college authorities cancelled the elections to the students union on the grounds of insufficient quorum.

The case was being heard by a court in Ujjain, but Mr Himanshu moved the Apex court with a plea to a shift the case to a court outside MP, saying a fair trial was not possible in that state because it was ruled by the BJP. The apex court had then ordered the case to be shifted to Nagpur.

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