Sources have stated that the Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed Karnataka’s plea to review the abatement of appeal against former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha and recovery of 100 crore fine in a disproportionate assets case. Earlier on March 21 last, the Karnataka government moved the review petition in the court. The State said the court's finding in its February 14, 2017 judgment that the corruption case against Ms. Jayalalitha stood abated with her demise on December 5, 2016 was an “error on the face of the record”, which merits a relook.
In a scathing judgment, based on an appeal filed by Karnataka, a Bench of Justices P.C. Ghose and Amitava Roy made strong observations against Ms. Jayalalitha, albeit posthumously, of how she had criminally conspired with co-accused V.K. Sasikala at her Poes Garden residence to launder ill-gotten wealth.
The review petition had contended that there are no
provisions either in the Constitution or in the Supreme Court Rules, 2013 for
such abatement of appeal. On the other hand, the Supreme Court Rules, 2013
provide that both in case of civil appeals as well as election petitions there
will be no abatement if the death takes place after conclusion of hearing.
The Karnataka government said though a plea for jail sentence had become “infructuous” now and the Supreme Court should have nevertheless ordered that the Rs. 100 crore fine imposed on Jayalalitha by the trial court be paid. The fine should have been recovered from her estate.