Land case: Karna HC grants anticipatory bail to Kumaraswamy

Land case: Karna HC grants anticipatory bail to Kumaraswamy

The Karnataka High Court today granted anticipatory bail to JDS state chief H D Kumaraswamy in a land denotification case, holding that materials on record at this stage do not prima facie indicate that he had obtained pecuniary advantage.

Justice K N Keshavanarayana granted the relief to the former Chief Minister in the case relating to alleged illegalities in denotification of three acres of government land in Thanisandra here in 2007 for "pecuniary gain".

On April 20, the court had granted interim anticipatory bail to Kumaraswamy for six weeks.

"At this stage, I find no reasonable grounds to believe that the petitioner is guilty of any offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act or under IPC," the judge said.

The court further stated "as could be seen from the accusation made against this petitioner, prima facie the alleged acts have been done in exercise of power as Chief Minister.

Therefore, prima facie sanction as required by Section of 197 of CrPC to prosecute him for the offences under IPC is necessary. Perusal of charge sheet papers does not indicate any such sanction obtained from the competent authority".

The judge also observed the petitioner was an MP and the entire evidence against him was based on documents which have been seized and produced before the jurisdictional court.

There was no likelihood of Kumaraswamy fleeing away from justice, the court said, adding that since interrogation was already over and charge sheet filed before the jurisdictional court, Kumaraswamy's presence was not required for custodial interrogation.

The case was registered on a private complaint by one Mahadevswamy. The Lokayukta court last month ordered issue of summons to Kumaraswamy and others following which he had moved the High Court seeking anticipatory bail.

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