Lokayukta court postpones hearing in Yeddy case



Lokayukta court postpones hearing in Yeddy case Zeenews Bureau

Bangalore: A special Lokayukta court on Monday postponed its hearing in the illegal land denotification case involving former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa.

The court will now hear the case on September 7.

Yeddyurappa had been summoned to appear before additional city civil and sessions' court judge NK Sudhindra Rao, who also functions as special Lokayukta court, on August 27 (Saturday).

However, the BJP leader failed to appear in the trial court on Saturday on the ground that he was suffering from fever and sought permission to be represented by his advocate.

On Saturday, Yeddyurappa’s counsel had pleaded for personal exemption as the ex-CM was suffering from fever. But Rao rejected the counsel's prayer and ordered Yeddyurappa to be present in the court today.

Anticipating his arrest in the case, Yeddyurappa had moved the state High Court seeking anticipatory bail. However, the High Court today rejected his plea.

The case relates to the denotification of lands near Bangalore in favour of his kith and kin during his tenure as the ruling BJP first chief minister in South India.

The case was filed on January 23 by advocates Sirajin Bhasha and NK Balaraj after state Governor HR Bhardwaj gave them permission on January 21 to launch criminal proceedings against Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurapa resigned on July 31 after former Lokayukta N Santosh Hegde recommended his trial for graft in the multi-crore mining scam in the state.

In their complaints, the two advocates accused Yeddyurappa, his two sons BY Raghavendra and BY Vijayendra, son-in-law R Sohan Kumar and 11 others of conspiracy to denotify the lands in return for monetary benefits.

Raghavendra is the ruling party's Lok Sabha member from Shimoga, about 280 km from Bangalore.

Meanwhile, the Karnataka High Court today also dismissed as withdrawn a petition filed by Yeddyurappa praying for quashing of Chapter 22 of the Lokayukta report on illegal mining that indicted him.

Yeddyurappa's counsel filed a memo before the bench, comprising justices KL Manjunath and HS Kempanna, seeking to withdraw the petition, citing "subsequent developments," as well as liberty to challenge it at a later date.

"No liberty can be granted", the court said, dismissing the petition as withdrawn, and also observed that seeking quashing of the report when investigation into it has not started is "premature". The bench observed that the Lokayukta probe was referred by the government.

In Chapter 22 of the Lokayukta report submitted to the government last month, initiation of prosecution under the Prevention of Corruption Act was recommended against Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurappa's counsel had earlier argued that the report had been made without hearing the petitioner and it is violative of principles of natural justice, and that it has gone beyond the terms of reference, among others.