1 Dec 2022 5:05 PM GMT
The Telangana High Court today granted bail to three accused in connection with the alleged TRS MLAs poaching case, and directed them to appear before the Special Investigation Team (SIT), which is probing the case, every Monday.While granting them bail, the bench of Justice Chillakur Sumalatha took into account the fact that the accused have been in judicial custody for over a month...
The Telangana High Court today granted bail to three accused in connection with the alleged TRS MLAs poaching case, and directed them to appear before the Special Investigation Team (SIT), which is probing the case, every Monday.
While granting them bail, the bench of Justice Chillakur Sumalatha took into account the fact that the accused have been in judicial custody for over a month and that the material part of the investigation is almost over. The Court also directed them to furnish bail bonds of ₹ 3 lakh each along with two sureties of the same amount.
The accused, who have been booked under relevant sections of the IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 are - Ramachandra Bharti, Kore Nandu Kumar and D. P. S. K. V. N. Simhayaji. They have been accused of offering Rs 100 crore to a TRS MLA/Informant asking him to leave the TRS and contest as a BJP candidate in the next Assembly election.
They moved to the HC after a local court rejected their bail applications earlier. During the hearing of the case today, the Counsel appearing for one of the accused argued that the arrests were made without following the mandate prescribed under Section 41A of CrPC.
It was further argued that the complaint itself is not maintainable as the parameters under Section 17 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, are not followed.
On the other hand, the state argued that as the crime was committed in the presence of the Police, issuance of notice under Section 41-A Cr.P.C. does not arise and Police have got every power to arrest.
Having heard both sides, the Court remarked thus, as it granted them bail:
"From the contentions of the Additional Public Prosecutor, it is clear that the investigation began on 26-10-22 and that the entire material pertaining to this case has been seized by the police and is in the possession of the police. Admittedly, the state has every power to curtail those who hamper the investigation and it is more than one month that the accused are in prison and the material part of the investigation is complete. As a result, this court considers it acceptable to grant the criminal petitions of the accused in order to enhance their bail."
The development in the TRS MLAs poaching case so far
On October 26, Pilot Rohith Reddy, MLA, Tandur Assembly, lodged a first information report alleging that three accused persons met him and asked him to not contest as a candidate of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) party. Instead, he was allegedly asked to resign from the regional party and join the BJP and offered an "amount of Rs 100 crores besides contract works of the Central government".
Reddy further alleged that the accused persons threatened to foist criminal cases on him in case he did not agree to their proposal. Pursuant to his complaint, Moinabad Police Station registered an FIR under Sections 120B, 171B, 171E, and 506 of the IPC r/w Section 34 of the IPC and under Section 8 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
Subsequently, the BJP filed a writ petition before the single judge of the Telangana High Court praying for the entrusting of investigation of the matter to an SIT to ensure a free and fair probe.
On November 15, the Telangana High Court allowed the state government-constituted Special Investigation Team to continue its probe into the MLA poaching case, and also ordered that a single judge of the court would monitor the progress of the investigation.
However, on November 21, the Supreme Court quashed the directions passed by the Telangana High Court.
On November 25, the Telangana High Court stayed the notice issued by the Special Investigation Team to BJP's National General Secretary B.L. Santhosh in connection with the ongoing investigation in the alleged TRS MLA poaching case.
Case title - Kore Nandu Kumar v. The State of Telangana along with connected matters
Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Tel) 95
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