Principal District and Sessions Judge C S Murugan on Tuesday adjourned the hearing to June 8 on the petition filed by late Sankararaman’s wife, Padma, seeking re-examination of her and family members and police protection for them.
When the judge took up the hearing on petitions, neither Padma nor her counsel Manikandan was present in the court. Padma’s son Ananda Sharma, who was present, informed the judge that his mother was not well and hence could not be present for hearing.
The judge then directed Padma, her son and counsel to be present without fail in the hearing on June 8.
The judge also noted that further proceedings in the Sankararaman murder case could be taken up only after the disposal of the petitions by Padma and her family members.
It may be recalled that the Madras High Court had directed the Principal District and Sessions Judge, before whom the Sankararaman murder case was pending, to dispose of the petitions dated April 10 and 11 of Padma, the wife of the victim and prime witness in the case, expeditiously.
The Judge also directed all the 24 accused, including the prime accused, Kanchi Acharyas Jayendra Saraswathi and Vijayendra Saraswathi, without fail on the day.
Special Public Prosecutor N Devadoss told reporters later that the court had exempted the seers from appearing only for one hearing in April. The judge, after noting that only 12 of the 24 accused were present in court, querried the defence lawyers about it and then directed that all the accused be present on June 8 without fail.
Sankararaman, manager at the Varadaraja Perumal Temple in Kancheepuram, was allegedly murdered on its premises on September 3, 2004.
The trial was shifted to Puducherry court from Chengalpettu in Tamil Nadu by an October 2005 Supreme Court order. A total of 189 prosecution witnesses have been examined in the case and of this 87 turned hostile.