Chennai, May 20: The delay in filing an appeal before the Supreme Court may have helped J Jayalalithaa a considerable amount.
If the appeal is filed after she takes over as the Chief Minister of the state, the ground of the Karantaka government to seek a stay on the high court verdict becomes weaker.
J Jayalalithaa is likely to take over as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on Saturday. The Karnataka government has not yet taken a decision on when it would be filing the appeal, but has indicated that they would approach the Supreme Court seeking a reversal of the High Court verdict which had acquitted her in the disproportionate assets case.
Karnataka's stay plea may not be granted:
If the appeal is filed before the Supreme Court after Jayalalithaa has taken over as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu then the plea seeking a stay becomes weak. If a stay is granted on the High Court verdict it effectively means that the trial court verdict comes into play and she will have to step down.
In every likelihood the appeal may be filed only after Saturday and this would essentially mean that she will be the CM when the Supreme Court begins hearing the matter. In such an event, if Karnataka seeks a stay there is every likelihood that it may not grant the same as it would lead to confusion in the state of Tamil Nadu. The Supreme Court is most likely to allow her to continue as the CM until the appeal is finally disposed off.
Jayalalithaa had two sets of legal advise:
After the High Court had passed the verdict acquitting her in the case, there were several meetings that Jayalalithaa held with her legal team. While one team felt that she should wait until the disposal of the appeal before the Supreme Court the other differed.
One team felt that if she takes over as the CM and then the Supreme Court were to stay the High Court order, she would have to step down and this would not only lead to confusion but be embarrassing as well. The other team however felt that it could defeat the plea for a stay if she took over as the CM.
If she is the CM at the time of the appeal, then the Supreme Court may not try and disturb that position and the plea for a stay on the High Court order may not be granted.
What the SPP has to say:
Meanwhile the Special Public Prosecutor in the case, B V Acharya has advised the state of Karnataka to file an appeal as soon as possible. Not filing an appeal or delaying the same may send out the wrong message to the public, the SPP has also said.
The government must take immediate action and file the appeal. It is a fit case for an appeal as the acquittal has been granted on the basis of some mathematical errors, the SPP also informed the Karnataka government.