Bengaluru: Karnataka government today indicated that it would take “some more days” to decide on filing an appeal in the Supreme Court against acquittal of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in the disproportionate assets case. A meeting would be held with officials to discuss the issue, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T B Jayachandra told PTI, as exactly a week lapsed after the High Court gave a clean chit to the AIADMK chief and three others clearing them of “all charges” in the 19-year-old case.
Asked if it is necessary for the issue to be discussed in the state cabinet, he said, “That is why I have called a meeting with my officials to see how the case builds up for us to file an appeal.” “After the meeting, we will take a decision,” he said. He has called the meeting for later in the evening today, he said.
“Anyway we have some more days,” he said. Soon after the verdict that had paved the way for Jayalalithaa’s return as Chief Minister, Special Public Prosecutor B V Acharya had advised Karnataka government to file an appeal in the Supreme Court, saying it was a “fit case” to do so.
Acharya had however said that the ball was now in the government’s court. After the High Court verdict on May 11, Acharya had said the prosecution had been “seriously prejudiced” in the case as the state of Karnataka and SPP appointed by it were denied an opportunity to convince High Court through oral arguments. Acharya, who was re-appointed SPP by Karnataka Government after the Supreme Court held as “bad in law” the appointment of Bhavani Singh to the post by Tamil Nadu Government, had submitted written submissions seeking rejection of Jayalalithaa’s appeal.
He had also said the High Court verdict acquitting the former Chief Minister had “glaring arithmetical error” relating to her disproportionate assets. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has said that his government had nothing to do with either AIADMK or DMK and it would take a “legal decision” on filing an appeal in the Supreme Court.
Karnataka is the sole prosecuting agency in the case. The High Court’s verdict came on appeals by Jayalalithaa and her close aide Sasikala Natarajan and two of latter’s relatives against the judgment of the Special Court Judge John Michael D’Cunha, who, in September last, had awarded four years jail term to them. He had also slapped a fine of Rs 100 crore on Jayalalithaa and Rs 10 crore each on three others.