VIJAYAWADA: The Andhra Pradesh government on Monday filed a special leave petition (SLP) in the Supreme Court challenging the High Court’s interim orders staying a probe in a case registered against former advocate general Dammalapati Srinivas and 12 others in the Amaravati land scam and gagging the media from reporting on the contents of the FIR against them.
The government submitted that the impugned order was passed on a petition in which the FIR was not even questioned and sought to know if an investigation can be stayed in such a case, that too “at the very threshold of investigation.” Recalling the sequence of events, it explained that Dammalapati had moved the high court on September 14 evening fearing coercive action.
An FIR was lodged the next morning. “... upon filing of the FIR, the petition had become infructuous. However, not only was the petition considered but a slew of directions/restraint directions were issued... even when the FIR was not questioned. More importantly, these directions were passed not only in respect of the respondent (Dammalapati) but also all the other accused without reference to the contents of the FIR,” the government pointed out and termed the HC orders “wholly perverse.”
Refuting the arguments of Dammalapati, the government said even if his contention that the case was politically motivated was correct, it is settled law that it cannot be quashed if it is otherwise maintainable. Citing the Prakash Singh Badal vs State of Punjab case, it quoted the apex court order which says, “The ultimate test, therefore, is whether the allegations have any substance.”
Probe should not be shut out, says govt
The AP government, in its SLP, stated that an investigation should not be shut out at the threshold because a political opponent or a person with political difference raises an allegation of commission of offence.