The Supreme Court Friday ordered the resumption of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalitha’s trial in a 14-year-old corruption case.
A bench of Justice B. Sudershan Reddy and Justice S.S. Nijjar refused to entertain Jayalalitha’s lawsuit challenging the trial, while allowing the Bangalore trial court to resume day-to-day cross examination of prosecution witnesses from Monday.
The bench, however, asked the Bangalore court to grant sufficient opportunity to Jayalalitha to cross-examine the witnesses.
A bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan had March 16 temporarily halted the trial while deciding to hear March 19 Jayalalitha’s lawsuit. In this, she had challenged the March 10 ruling of the Karnataka High Court that endorsed June 5, 1997 order of the trial court taking cognisance of the complaint against her.
On Friday, the apex court refused to entertain her lawsuit, saying that the high court order did not suffer from any illegality.
The court had earlier transferred the cases out of Tamil Nadu on DMK leader Anbazhagan’s contention that a fair trial in the two cases against her was not possible in Tamil Nadu.
In her lawsuit, Jayalalitha contended the March 10 high court order had glossed over the fact that the chargesheet against her was not able to make out any case against her.
Her lawsuit said the Special Judge, Chennai, who earlier had taken cognisance of the June 1997 chargesheet against her “mechanically without applying his mind”.
Jayalalitha is accused of amassing Rs.66.65 crore between 1991 and 1996 when she was the chief minister.