Justice B Vijaysen Reddy of the Telangana High Court, examining the batch of cases pertaining to transfer of investigation in the MLA poaching case to the Central Bureau of Investigation, restrained the police from arresting two of the accused, Thushar Vellappally and B Srinivas, but at the same time, directed them to cooperate with the investigating agency.

Examining the cases which had as petitioners the Telangana unit of the BJP, Karimnagar-based advocate B Srinivas, NDA Kerala convener Thushar Vellappally and the prime accused in the case, Nanda Kumar, Simhayaji and Ramchandra Bharathi, the judge posted the case to December 6 for further hearing but at the same, issued directions asking the police not to arrest Thushar and Srinivas in the meanwhile.

While the petitioners alleged faults with the investigation by the Special Investigation Team and sought transfer of the case to the CBI, the State government submitted a report on the investigation by the SIT along with documents, CDs and pen drives etc., and argued that the investigation was going on in a fair manner.

Earlier, the jam-packed court hall witnessed senior counsels Dushyant Dave representing the State government, Mahesh Jethmalani for the three prime accused, Udaya Holla for B Srinivas, PP Hegde for Thushar and J Prabhakar for the State BJP, exchanging arguments for almost an entire day.

While the counsels argued against the manner in which the investigation was proceeding, and that the

implication of some of the accused were illegal, Dave submitted a report of the investigation to the Court along with material. He said the SIT had sufficient evidence to secure convictions for all the accused, including Srinivas and Thushar. On the arguments from the counsels from the accused against the Chief Minister presenting the evidence before the media, Dave said in a situation where there was an attempt to topple the State government, it was natural for a Chief Minister to react, and argued that BJP was a national party and the TRS had equal right to stand up if its existence was threatened.

While the investigation is handled by senior IPS officers who may work in the Central government at a future point of time, there should be no suspicion. The CBI works under the central government, Dave pointed out, also adding that if the High Court allowed for a CBI investigation, the same would be sought in other cases as well.

In a related development, Justice B Sumalatha of the High Court will hear the bail applications filed by the three accused Nandakumar, Simhayaji and Ramchandra Bharathi on Thursday morning on priority. When the matter came up on Wednesday, the additional public prosecutor sought for a week’s time to get instructions. Conceding with Senior Counsel Ravichander, who appeared on behalf of the accused, that the State was aware of the Supreme Court order and that the case has to be disposed expeditiously, the judge adjourned the case to Thursday.

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