The Supreme Court today permitted Sasikala Natrajan, a close aide of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, to inspect certain documents filed by the probe agency in the disproportionate assets case pending against them before a Bangalore trial court.
A bench of justices P Sathasivam and Ranjan Gogoi while allowing Sasikala’s plea said that the same shall be completed within 21 days and the special court trying the offence would determine the venue.
The Apex Court, however, clarified that today’s order would not affect, in any manner, any part of the ongoing trial or examination of the witnesses that has taken place so far.
The court had on September 5 reserved its order after hearing arguments by Sasikala’s counsel on her appeal against the Karnataka High Court ruling, which had concurred with the trial court order that she was not entitled to the documents which were not part of the charge sheet.
Earlier on June 25, the apex court had refused to stay the trial but had allowed her to place on record the relevant material relating to her claim that she was not provided with certain documents relating to the questions put to her in the ongoing day-to-day trial.
Jaya and others are accused of amassing disproportionate wealth during her tenure as chief minister in 1991-96.
On November 4 last year, the apex court had dismissed Jayalalithaa’s plea for exemption from personal appearance before the trial court in Bangalore.
The disproportionate assets (DA) case allegedly involves accumulation of assets worth over Rs 66 crore by Jayalalithaa between 1991 and 1996.
The DA case proceedings were shifted out of Tamil Nadu by the apex court in November 2003 following a petition filed by DMK leader K Anbazhagan when AIADMK was in power.
Jayalalithaa had said that the jewellery, silverware and footwear were “over valued” by Tamil Nadu’s Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption and that she did not own all the sarees confiscated in the case.