Reprieve for Kerala government - The New Indian Express

Reprieve for Kerala government

Published: 07th December 2012 09:16 AM

Last Updated: 07th December 2012 09:16 AM

The High Court Single Bench’s  cancellation of the FIR against Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan in the land gift case turned out to be a major setback for the government while Achuthanandan stands to derive political mileage.

However, the government got a respite when High Court Division Bench led by  Chief Justice Manjula Cheloor stayed the Single Bench verdict.

The Division Bench’s ruling to stay filing of the chargesheet against VS till the completion of the hearing on the appeal against the Single Bench ruling is over, has, however, raised the spirits of VS.

Meanwhile, legal experts are of the view that while the language and vocabulary used by the Single Bench were not apt, the Division Bench itself has shown an undue haste in admitting the appeal by the government against the cancellation of the FIR.

 Speaking to ‘Express’, lawyer Kaleeswaram Raj said that the single judge’s words carried a populist tone in some parts. It should have been based on pure legal reasoning and not on emotional  platform, he said.

 ‘’One may agree or disagree with the views taken by the single judge. But the haste  with which the State Government filed the appeal and the registry had numbered it and the Division Bench passed an interim stay  is something unusual. After all, the judgment by the single judge had only  quashed the FIR against VS. Even if the said judgment had not been stayed for a  few days nothing would have happened ‘’ he said.

 He said as such there was no exigency for the larger Bench to entertain an appeal which did not even contain the necessary papers, including the translation of documents. ‘’If an ordinary citizen files such an  appeal with incomplete records the registry would return it as defective,’’  he said. 

The manner in which the Division Bench entertained the appeal does not give  good indication. One doubts whether the same facility would be extended to all  litigants, he said.

On the political front, it is a setback for Chief Minister Oommen Chandy as he had been saying that the government would not show political vendetta. But the Chief Minister in his regular cabinet briefing on Wednesday had also stated that the government did not require any approval from the Governor for prosecuting the Opposition leader.

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