Prosecution case 'seriously prejudiced', SPP

Prosecution case 'seriously prejudiced', SPP

Special Public Prosecutor B V Acharya today said the prosecution case had been "seriously prejudiced" in the disproportionate assets case against former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and three others, as the state of Karnataka and SPP appointed by it was denied an opportunity to convince High Court through oral arguments.

Acharya said he was appointed as SPP after the Supreme Court order which said that appointed Public Prosecutor can file written submission within one day and there was no chance for oral arguments. "So High Court judge could not give me an opportunity."

"...the total effect is that the state of Karnataka and the Public Prosecutor appointed by it was denied an opportunity to convince High Court judge through oral arguments. This has seriously prejudiced the case of the prosecution," he told reporters after the High Court acquitted Jayalalithaa and three others.

Acharya returned as SPP in the DA case after the Supreme Court on April 27 held as "bad in law" the appointment of Bhawani Singh.

A former Advocate General who had earlier resigned as SPP, he had filed a written submission before the High Court, seeking dismissal of appeals filed by Jayalalithaa and three others.

Jayalalithaa and her close aide Sasikala Natarajan and two of the latter's relatives were sentenced to undergo four years imprisonment by the trial court, besides being slapped a fine of Rs 100 crore on her and Rs 10 crore each on three others.

Acharya said State of Karnataka was the sole prosecuting agency as the Supreme Court said but it had been denied adequate opportunity before the High Court.

"While on behalf of the accused for about two months appellants lawyers have made their arguments before the court and during that time there was no Public Prosecutor in place appointed by Karnataka government. So the entire proceedings have gone on without a validly appointed Public Prosecutor."

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