HC orders trial court to consider Chandraswami's plea

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New Delhi, Nov 6 (UNI) The Delhi High Court today ordered the trial court to consider godman Chandraswami's petition seeking his right to travel abroad.

Justice S N Dhingra said,"a person's liberty to travel abroad can't be curtailed in the name of a pending investigation. The court of ACMM should not give a hearing to the CBI for opposing the application on the ground of pendency of an investigation in Rajiv Gandhi murder case. The petitioner's application must be considered on merits only." He added that ''the ACMM should not have taken into account the arguments of the CBI. If the CBI had been serious enough it would have got the Union of India to pass an order curbing the petitioner's application to travel abroad. It would have afforded the petitioner an opportunity to know the evidences against himself. The CBI has not filed any chargesheet.'' Chandraswami has been out on bail in several cases under FERA.

The Supreme Court had put a condition that he could leave the country only on permission from the court.

His application for seeking permission to travel abroad was last disposed of by the ACMM in 2004 when the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate expressed apprehension that once out of the country the Chandraswami might never return to face trial in enforcement cases and Rajiv Gandhi assasination case.

However, the High Court said a continuously pending investigation couldn't overtake a person's liberty. The Supreme Court held right to go abroad as a part of personal liberty under the Article 21 of the Constitution in 1975.


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