New Delhi: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa was on Tuesday granted exemption by the Supreme Court from personal appearance tomorrow in a Karnataka court which is holding the trial of a 17-year-old disproportionate assets case against her.
A bench comprising justices B S Chauhan and S A Bobde allowed her plea keeping in view the ongoing assembly session.
The other accused V K Sasikala, V N Sudhakaran and J Elavarasi - will have to appear before the trial court judge in Bangalore tomorrow.
The apex court bench will tomorrow hear the petition of the AIADMK supremo and others challenging the notification issued by the Karnataka government, appointing G B Mudigoudar as the judge to conduct the cases in a Bangalore court from October 1.
Mudigoudar was appointed following the retirement of Balakrishna who attained the age of superannuation on September 30 to conclude the trial expeditiously.
Jayalalithaa and others contended that the Karnataka government had committed contempt of court by not implementing the apex court directions issued on September 30, quashing the notification revoking the appointment of G Bhavani Singh as the special public prosecutor.
They submitted that the apex court while allowing Singh to continue as the SPP, asked the state government and the high court on its administrative side to consider extending the services of Balakrishna to conclude the trial expeditiously.
The petitioners said that without implementing the apex court directions, the government issued a notification on October 3 appointing Mudigoudar as the presiding judge with retrospective effect from October 1 until further orders.
In the petition, they said the special judge on October 3 itself took up the case and directed them to appear in court on October 30 when it was wholly unnecessary as the questioning under Section 313 CrPC was over, the defence had concluded the arguments and the prosecution was midway in concluding its arguments.