New Delhi, July 27: A Division Bench of the Supreme Court today issued notices to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and three others on an appeal filed challenging her acquittal in the disproportionate assets case.
The Bench hearing the appeal however refused to stay the acquittal of Jayalalithaa and others.
The appeal has been filed by the Karnataka government challenging the acquittal of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, J Jayalalithaa and others in the disproportionate assets case.
The Karnataka government has sought reversal of the order of the Karnataka High Court which acquitted the Tamil Nadu Chief Miniter and her aides, Sasikala Natrajan, Ilavarasi and Sudhakaran.
Karnataka sought stay of HC order:
When the matter came up for hearing, Karnataka appealed to the Supreme Court to stay the order of the Karnataka High Court.
The High Court had acquitted Jayalalithaa and others of all charges. The Karnataka government sought that the order be stayed and the verdict of the trial court which had convicted her be in force.
The Bench however issued notices to Jayalalithaa, Ilavarasi, Sasikala Natrajan and Sudhakaran while adjourning hearing on the matter. Had the Supreme Court stayed the order of the High Court, then Jayalalithaa would have had to step down as the CM of Tamil Nadu.
The appeals filed by DMK leader Anbazahagan and the Karnataka Government will be heard together by the Supreme Court.
Today the Supreme Court granted time to jayalalithaa and others to file their responses to the appeal. In their response they would have to explain as to why the appeals are not maintainable.
Grounds for appeal:
The main emphasis of the appeal is on the arithmetic errors committed by Justice Kumaraswamy while delivering the verdict of acquittal against Jayalalithaa and her aides.
As per the opinion given by Acharya the judge had erred while calculating the quantum of the disproportionate assets.
A calculation error had brought down the quantum to less than 10 percent as a result of which the case resulted in an acquittal.
The second line of argument in the appeal is that Karnataka the prosecuting state was not made a party in the appeal.
The appeal states that Karnataka was made the prosecuting state by the Supreme Court when the case was transferred from Tamil Nadu. However, during the course of the hearing in the High Court, Karntaka was neither heard nor made a party.
This is a serious defect and an order could not have been passed without hearing the prosecuting state. Making the prosecuting state or agency is a legal mandate.
Jayalalithaa's legal team was given two months time to advance arguments, but no prosecutor authorised by Karnataka was present during such arguments. Karnataka was not given a chance to put forth arguments.