HC sets aside order dropping charges against Reddy

The Karnataka High Court on Friday set aside a special court order that dropped charges against then Ballari district minister G Janardhan Reddy in connection with illegal iron ore transportation by misusing his office.

Hearing a revision petition filed by the CBI, Justice B A Patil said the trial court cannot alter its order after framing the charges and hearing the witness in the case.

The court said it was unacceptable that natural resources were destroyed by persons who were bound to protect them. The charges were framed by the trial court and witnesses heard. After framing the charges the trial court judge erred in passing the impugned order, it said. Advocate for CBI Prasanna Kumar contended that dropping charges was a miscarriage of justice under Sec 216 of CrPC.

The CBI filed charges in 2016 before the special court against Reddy, the DCF, the deputy director of mines and geology, and Swastik Traders partner Swastik Nagaraj, alleging that they were involved in illegal transportation of iron ore to Belikeri port by musing official powers, destroying land mark of the mining quarries.

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