Rodrigues moves High Court against lower court order

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Panaji, Jul 14 (UNI) The decision of the city-based Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) Edgar Fernandes not to issue summons to Divya Rane in a case against her husband Goa Health Minister Viswajeet Rane, for allegedly threatening to kill Utt Goenkara spokesman Adv Aires Rodrigues was today challenged by the latter through a writ petition before the Panaji Bench of the Bombay High Court.

The petition, filed by Mr Rodrigues under Article 227 of the Constitution, will come up for hearing on July 17.

Adv Rodrigues had, in his petition, submitted that the JMFC's order was in excess of jurisdiction with grave jurisdictional errors as the JMFC misdirected himself in law and travelled beyond his jurisdiction, in rejecting the application made to summon Mrs Rane as a witness.

He said the JMFC's findings that Mrs Rane was not a material witness to the case was 'perverse' and muzzled the criminal case against the Health Minister.

Adv Rodrigues had stated that an ordinary citizen's life was threatened by a rich and powerful Minister and the nefarious attempts of the accused Minister to keep out relevant and material evidence by objecting to the witness summons had succeeded in view of the JMFC's order, which now needed to be struck down.

The petition also stated that since the alleged threatening call came from the mobile of the Mrs Rane, the circumstances under which the mobile came in the possession of Mr Rane was very relevant.

Adv Rodrigues has further submitted that whether the mobile was given to Vishwajit Rane by his wife at the time of the incident or earlier and whether Divya Rane was present when the call was made or heard the statements made in the call were all facts within the knowledge of Mrs Rane and so she was a very material witness in the criminal case against the minister.

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