CBI court's shocker to Jagan: No relief from attendance

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy

In a big blow to Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy in the disproportionate assets case, the CBI special court here on Friday dismissed his petition for exemption from personal appearance in the court.

This means he has to attend the court every Friday to face the trial making him one of the few chief ministers to attend the court while in power.

However, experts say he will have one option to seek exemption from personal appearance, by filing a petition under section 317 of the Criminal Procedure Code for a particular day. He has to convince the court that the grounds are justified for exemption for the particular day. It may not be possible to get this exemption every week.

It may be mentioned that Jagan had applied for exemption from personal appearance citing the responsibilities as a chief minister. He also claimed that the already strained state exchequer cannot afford his protocol and security expenses on account of appearance in court.

During the arguments on October 18, the CBI negated Jagan's claims. It said there was no change in the conditions of the disproportionate assets case, except for Jagan becoming the CM. It contended that exemption would empower him to influence the witnesses in the case. 

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