Revision petitions against TN ministers in disproportionate assets case taken up with CJ's approval: HC judge

He reaffirmed that he would not recuse from even a single case, but would continue to hear all of them.

Published: 20th September 2023 04:41 PM  |   Last Updated: 20th September 2023 04:41 PM   |  A+A-


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Express News Service

CHENNAI: Refusing to accede to the repeated request of the counsels for Tamil Nadu Ministers KKSSR Ramachandran and Thangam Thennarasu for recusal in the suo motu revision cases initiated by the High Court, Justice N Anand Venkatesh on Wednesday told their counsels to knock the doors of the Supreme Court if they have a good case against his orders.

He also said the revisions were initiated by him only with the approval of the Chief Justice.

The judge made the comments while hearing the two suo revision petitions initiated by him against the trial court orders discharging them from disproportionate assets.

“If the order is pre-conceived and not in accordance with the law, go to the apex court,” he told the counsels appearing for the respondent ministers.

The judge added that nobody wants to file an appeal before the Supreme Court, why everybody is arguing here.

Senior counsel A Ramesh, appearing for Thennarasu, pointed out that once a suo motu cognizance is made by the court, it would naturally be placed before the Chief Justice for deciding the judge to hear the matter.
Responding to him the judge revealed that he had initiated the suo motu revision only after the Chief Justice of Madras High Court gave his nod for numbering the case. “You are under the assumption that I am doing it.”

He reaffirmed that he would not recuse from even a single case, but would continue to hear all of them.
Another senior counsel NR Elango appearing for Ramachandran also asked the judge to recuse since the minister feels him to be biased.

Justice Anand Venkatesh had taken up the suo motu revision of the orders passed by the principal district and sessions court of Virudnagar district on December 12, 2022, and July 20, 2023, to discharge TN Finance Minister Thangam Thennarasu and Revenue Minister Ramachandran respectively, along with their family members and friends, from the DA cases.

He had commented, while taking up the revision, that both orders revealed a 'well-orchestrated pattern' as the special court (principal distriçt and sessions court) had taken cognizance of the final reports in 2013-14; discharge applications were filed, and the cases were adjourned for months and years till 2021 when 'the political fortunes in the State smiled at the main accused who regained their positions as Ministers in the State Cabinet.

The judge also stated the approach of the special court appears to be 'ex-facie illegal and cannot stand scrutiny' even for a moment since the court had no power, whatsoever at the stage of discharge under section 239 of CrPC, 'to discard, without assigning any reason, findings and materials which culminated in the charge sheet'. 

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