Shahid Usman Balwa, an accused in the 2G spectrum allocation case and his lawyers today created a flutter in a Delhi court when they registered strong objections to the judge's interventions during cross examination of witness saying the atmosphere created was "supporting the prosecution case".
The lawyers said the court was giving more importance to the witnesses and was "humiliating" them.
Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Usman Balwa and his counsel made the statements when Special CBI judge OP Saini asked how much more time they require to cross examine Nripendra Mishra, former chairman of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.
Balwa at this point sought permission to speak and said "as an accused I have a right to defend myself. If you don't allow us to defend ourself, you please pass the sentence against us. I am ready to face the sentence."
All the defence lawyers and accused present in the court room moved towards the Judge's bench and said "we (lawyers) have decided to raise this issue."
"Unfortunately, the atmosphere created is such as if your honour is supporting the prosecution case," advocate R N Mittal, appearing for Balwa and other accused in the case, said.
Mittal said giving specific time to lawyers to cross examine the witness and regular interruptions (on the part of judge) were "not correct" and said "this was not the way to conduct the trial".
The judge, however, said he had only asked how much time they would take for cross examination and has not restrained them from taking more time.
"I only asked how much time you will take", the judge said.