Bengaluru, May 27: The Karnataka state government has time till August 11 to file an appeal challenging the order of acquittal in the disproportionate assets case relating to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, J Jayalalithaa. While it was expected that the appeal would be filed soon, sources now inform that the Karnataka government may go up in appeal before the Supreme Court only once the BBMP elections are over.
For the ruling Congress in Karnataka, the BBMP elections is extremely important and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah wants to leave no stone unturned. Keeping in mind the 30 lakh odd Tamil voters in Bengaluru city, the appeal may be delayed, sources also informed.
The elections to the BBMP is scheduled to be held by the end of July 2015. It is a high stakes battle and the prospects of any political party would be decided on the 30 lakh strong Tamil voters in the city. It is a deciding factor no doubt, says a senior Congress leader while also stating that the appeal could be delayed only due to this reason.
Among the 30 lakh Tamil voters in the city, there are large number of them who are supporters of the AIDMK. If the government of Karnataka files an appeal now, it would give the impression that they are anti-AIDMK and this could hurt their prospects in the elections to the BBMP, sources also said.
Karnataka knows it will have to file an appeal:
The fact of the matter is that the appeal has been readied a long time back. It was only a matter of timing and the government was unable to decide when the right time would be to go before the Supreme Court. Moreover Karnataka would have been happier if the DMK went in appeal first.
Karnataka being the prosecuting state in this case would have to be served notices by the Supreme Court. The government would have preferred this approach instead and file the appeal based on the directive of the Supreme Court. The legal opinion given to the Karnataka government makes it clear, " not filing an appeal is not an option."
Looking for excuses:
Sources say that the Karnataka government has been looking for excuses to delay filing the appeal. It has asked for two bizarre opinions today. One was whether sanction is needed to file the appeal considering the fact that Jayalalithaa is the Chief Minister today.
The second was whether the permission of the Chief Justice of Karnataka needs to be sought while appointing a Special Public Prosecutor in the case. Legal experts have laughed this off by saying that neither is sanction required nor the permission of the CJ needed.
These are just delaying tactics and the government wants to buy time until the BBMP elections are over, experts point out.