The Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday stayed proceedings in a lower court till the pendency of a civil revision petition preferred by Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal in a case pertaining to ongoing recovery suit filed by Jagdip Singh Chowhan, a former additional director in the Punjab information and public relations department.
The high court has also issued summons to Chowhan for appearance on May16.
The said recovery suit has been going on since November 2001 at the district courts in Chandigarh.
Badal has filed a civil revision petition under Article 227 of the Constitution for quashing/modification of the order dated March13, 2013, passed by UT additional civil judge (senior division) Rajnish Kumar Sharma to the extent of declining the prayer of the petitioner (Badal) for recording evidence on commission, at the places of his choice, that is, "his official residence, Punjab civil secretariat, Punjab Bhawan or UT guesthouse, which are secure official buildings."
The additional civil judge had also declined an application of the Badals to seek exemption from recording evidence as witnesses as well as cross-examination outside the court premises in an ongoing recovery suit for Rs. 82,032 filed by Chowhan.
In the civil revision petition filed in the high court, the chief minister has made his son and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal a 'pro forma respondent', showing his as "presently residing in punjab chief minister's house, Kothi number 45, Sector 2, Chandigarh."
The chief minister urged that during the pendency of the present petition in the high court, further proceedings before the trial court may be stayed.
Badal contended in his civil revision petition "that the civil judge has not given due weight to the considerations of threat of security involved. It is submitted that from security point of view that recording of evidence in a secure official building as mentioned in the application ought to have been directed."
Badal also prayed to the high court that "they want to see the outcome of the revision petition and pray for adjournment of the case."
Accepting their prayer, the high court fixed May 28, 2013, as the next date of hearing in the case.