The Supreme Court on Thursday extended by four months the bail of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in a disproportionate assets case and asked the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court to constitute a special bench to decide her plea expeditiously within three months.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India, H. L. Dattu ordered that the hearing in the high court on the appeal filed by the AIADMK Chief challenging her conviction and sentence in the case, be conducted on a day-to-day basis.
“Keeping in view the facts of the case, we request the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court to constitute a special bench for hearing of appeal on day-to-day basis. The hearing should be completed within three months,” the bench, also comprising Justice A. K. Sikri, said.
“The bail granted by this court on October 17 is extended by another four months, that is, till April 18, 2015,” the bench said.
It also asked senior advocate KTS Tulsi, appearing for Jayalalithaa, who was awarded four years jail term along with a fine of Rs 100 crore in the DA case, to provide a copy of documents of the case to BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.
Swamy, during the brief hearing, raised the issue of law and order in Tamil Nadu, saying the posters of the slain LTTE chief Prabhakaran are being pasted across the state.
“We gave you (Swamy) the liberty that if there is anything against you, you just mention that before us. We will take a call,” the bench said.
On October 17, the apex court had granted conditional bail to Jayalalithaa, who was sent to jail by a trial court on September 27, saying that hearing on her appeal against conviction in High Court should be completed in five months from now.
The apex court, which had also granted bail to the AIADMK chief’s close aide Sasikala and two of her relatives, had refused to dispose of the bail plea while posting the case for hearing on Thursday.
The 66-year-old politician, who had moved the Supreme Court for bail on October 9 after she was denied bail by the Karnataka High Court, had submitted that she had been sentenced to only four years jail in the case and she was also suffering from various ailments, as grounds for her immediate relief.
The Special Court had held Jayalalithaa and three others guilty of corruption. The court had also slapped a fine of Rs 100 crore on the AIADMK chief and Rs 10 crore fine on each of the three other convicts.