Short-lived relief in denotification case for BSY

Short-lived relief in denotification case for BSY

High Court lifts stay on proceedings

Hearing an appeal by Sirajin Basha, who had appealed against the single judge order dated September 30 staying the proceedings, the division bench comprising Justice N Kumar and Justice Aravind Kumar vacated the stay and observed, “The High Court cannot stay the proceedings in cases under the Prevention of Corruption Act. It is contrary to the laws laid down by the Supreme Court.”

In a hearing which lasted just 90 minutes, Justice Kumar observed that the court cannot stay the proceedings. “The common man’s hopes hinge on the judiciary. Orders staying cases against corruption may take away such hope.”

The order running into 40 pages, dictated in open court by Justice N Kumar, mainly emphasised the fact that the single judge has failed to give appropriate reasons before passing the order. “Though the court has power, the single judge has exercised it contrary to the law declared by the SC,” ordered Justice Kumar.

The SC, in 2001 itself, had ruled that no court could stay trial of cases under the Prevention of Corruption Act, not even temporarily.

Belies people’s hopes
The judge further observed that when Parliament is pressed to pass bills to prevent corruption and investigating agencies, police and other institutions are making efforts to bring down corruption, including the Governor giving permission to a man to file a complaint, if the court orders a stay on the proceedings, it will send a wrong message to the society.

When the hearing commenced, the bench asked the parties whether they would argue against the  interim stay or on the main matter. Both the parties agreed to argue on the main matter. Later, Supreme Court senior counsel R P Nayak, appearing before the court filed a memo seeking to vacate the stay. Stating that the High Court cannot stay the proceedings initiated under Prevention of Corruption Act, he cited several apex court directions in this connection.

On Friday, Justice B S Patil stayed the proceedings with respect to a petition challenging summons issued by the court on August 8 in the complaint relating to denotification of BDA-acquired lands in Geddalahalli under Arkavathi Layout and in Devarachikkanahalli and Arakere, in favour of persons close to the former CM.

The single judge granted an interim stay on proceedings following summons issued on August 23, relating to denotification of land in Uttarahalli and Agara. The single judge had observed that the special court had considered offences for which the Governor had not accorded sanction and also the procedure under Section 202 of the Criminal Procedure Code was not followed, given that three of the 15 accused stayed outside the jurisdiction of the court.

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