Mumbai: Special court rejects Arun Gawli’s plea; says can’t review own order

A special court under the Maharashtra Control of Organized Crime Act (MCOCA) has declined the plea of former gangster Arun Gawli to review its order rejecting his plea to bring on record the police statement of the approver in the case.

The court while rejecting his plea on Monday has said in its order that it being a criminal court cannot review its own order and that he must approach a superior court for relief against the order.

The court had on 14 February last year rejected the plea to bring the approver’s police statement on record. While opposing the present plea, the prosecution had argued that Gawli had not challenged the previous order. It had said further that the matter is old and the plea is made to prolong the trial.

Presently, Gawli’s advocate is conducting cross-examination of the approver and in the present plea, had said that he requires his statement on record or serious prejudice will be caused to Gawli and co-accused. His advocate also cited High Court and Supreme Court judgments on the subject.

Special judge under the MCOCA Act Rahul R. Bhosale said about this, that the citations have been cited only now and were not referred to in the previous plea and that hence the submission is not applicable.

The case pertains to extortion of a builder who was redeveloping an SRA project in Dadar. Men of Gawli allegedly asked him to pay Rs. 50 lakhs if he wanted to continue with the redevelopment work. He paid Rs. 10 lakhs and was later threatened by men who came into his office and assaulted him, to pay another Rs. 3 lakhs. He then approached the crime branch. One of the men involved in the extortion had turned approver in the case.

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