In a setback to companies owned by Kadapa MP YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, the High Court on Wednesday imposed exemplary cost of Rs 1 lakh each to three miscellaneous petitions filed by Jagati Publications, Janani Infra and Indira Television Limited relating to a case of freezing of certain accounts by the CBI.
It directed the company to pay the costs to AP State Legal Services Authority within seven days.
Justice B Chandra Kumar was dealing with miscellaneous petitions seeking to modify the earlier orders by permitting it to furnish immovable property security by way of depositing title deeds of properties belonging to Janani Infra and itself.
The judge remarked that it was most unfortunate that the court was not informed that 19 other current accounts were being maintained by the petitioners at various locations. It was also most unfortunate that even after passing the orders on May 23 the petitioners never approached the court to intimate about the said accounts. When the CBI had frozen the 19 accounts with the SBI then only they approached this court. Now, it is shocking to note that the petitioners have opened 19 accounts with Canara Bank and have been transacting with them. It is nothing but a clear violation of the earlier orders passed on May 23 and July 6. In fact, the court had made categorical direction that all the revenue and collections should be made through current accounts only. It appears that they are conveniently hoodwinking and flouting the earlier orders.
“In view of the conduct of the petitioners, they are directed not to open any account with any bank without prior permission of the High Court and the CBI is directed to inform all the banks not to open any new accounts or to operate any other existing bank accounts other than the bank acocunts covered by the orders of this court. It is the duty of the CBI and the petitioners to assist the court in arriving at truth and passing orders in accordance with law, justice and equity,” the judge noted.
“The petitioners do not deserve the relief claimed by them in these petitions and are liable to be dismissed. It is needless to say that they have to strictly comply with the earlier orders of this court passed on May 23 and July 6. Jagati Publications is not entitled to seek any further relief and they are liable to pay exemplary costs for their conduct. I appreciate the efforts of the CBI counsel in assisting the court,” the court remarked.
The High Court, in its interlocutory orders earlier, took into consideration that the alleged total crime money involved is ` 1,172.56 crore and the tangible assets is Rs 490.79 crore, and ordered the companies concerned not to alienate, sell in any form either by way of sale, mortgage etc. It gave liberty to the companies to approach the court for slight modifications of the orders if any practical difficulties arose. Accordingly, it modified the order on two occasions when the companies asked for review of the earlier order.