T’gana govt challenges transfer of MLAs’ poaching case to CBI | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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T’gana govt challenges transfer of MLAs’ poaching case to CBI

Jan 05, 2023 12:12 AM IST

The government argued that even the petitioners had not asked for dissolution of the SIT. It also defended the press conference held by chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on the alleged poaching issue and said it could not be shown as the pretext to transfer the case to the CBI

Hyderabad

In its petition, the KCR government challenged the decision of the single-judge bench dissolving the SIT constituted to probe the alleged attempt to poach the MLAs. It contended that transferring the case to CBI was tantamount to diluting the entire case. (HT Archives)
In its petition, the KCR government challenged the decision of the single-judge bench dissolving the SIT constituted to probe the alleged attempt to poach the MLAs. It contended that transferring the case to CBI was tantamount to diluting the entire case. (HT Archives)

The Telangana government on Wednesday moved a division bench of the state high court, challenging the judgement of a single-judge bench transferring the case of alleged attempt to poach four Bharat Rashtra Samithi MLAs into the Bharatiya Janata Party to the Central Bureau of Investigation, people familiar with the matter said.

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Apart from the state government, state director general of police, Special Investigation Team headed by Hyderabad police commissioner C V Anand and Cyberabad police filed separate petitions before the division bench headed by chief justice Ujjal Bhuyan.

In its petition, the state government challenged the decision of the single-judge bench dissolving the SIT constituted to probe the alleged attempt to poach the MLAs. It contended that transferring the case to the CBI, which is a central government agency, was tantamount to diluting the entire case.

The government argued that even the petitioners had not asked for dissolution of the SIT. It also defended the press conference held by chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on the alleged poaching issue and said it could not be shown as the pretext to transfer the case to the CBI.

“As the head of a political party, the chief minister held a press conference to explain the conspiracy to destabilise his government to the people of the country. His comments were made based on the FIR and other issues which were in public domain. There is nothing to find fault with the chief minister,” the government said.

Stating that how the evidence had reached the chief minister had nothing to do with the original petition, the government said since the chief minister was not a respondent in the case, it is not legally correct to take his comments at the press conference into consideration.

On December 26, the single-judge bench of the high court headed by Justice B Vijaysen Reddy, acting on a petition filed by BJP state general secretary G Premender Reddy on October 29, ordered transfer of the alleged poaching attempt case from the SIT to the CBI.

While dissolving the SIT, the judge directed that the SIT hand over all the details of the investigation done so far, along with documents, evidence and witness accounts, to the CBI.

The judge agreed with the contention of senior advocate N Ramachandra Rao arguing on behalf of petitioner that the BJP had no faith in the investigation by the SIT of the Telangana police, as the case was politically motivated.

The Telangana government on November 9 constituted the SIT to probe into the alleged attempt to poach four BRS lawmakers – Pilot Rohit Reddy, Rega Kantha Rao, Guvvala Balaraju and B Harsh Vardhan Reddy into the BJP by three persons – Ramachandra Bharati from Faridabad, Nanda Kumar from Hyderabad and Simhayaji Swamy from Tirupati.

The three accused were detained by the Cyberabad police at a farmhouse on the outskirts of Hyderabad on October 26, while they were allegedly bargaining with the four BRS MLAs by offering them huge cash, posts and contracts.

A day later, the police filed a criminal case against three persons based on a complaint lodged by Rohit Reddy at Moinabad police station under Section 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 171-B r/w 171-E 506 r/w 34 (offering bribe for electoral gains) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 8 of Prevention of Corruption Act-1988.

The accused were later produced in the local court for Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) cases. The ACB court, initially, dismissed the remand of the three accused stating that they were not served notices in advance under Section 41 of the Criminal Procedure Code before being taken into custody.

However, on October 29, the same court sent them to judicial remand for 14 days, hours after the intervention of the state high court which accepted the remand report of the police. The accused have since been lodged in the Chanchalguda central prison. They were granted bail on December 1 and released from jail subsequently.

On November 3, Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao alleged that the BJP leadership was trying to topple democratically-elected governments in four opposition-ruled states. He released video files and other documents, purportedly showing the three accused, claiming to be closer to top BJP leadership, talking to the four TRS MLAs and inducing them with various benefits if they joined the BJP.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Srinivasa Rao is Senior Assistant Editor based out of Hyderabad covering developments in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana . He has over three decades of reporting experience.

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