Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court on Tuesday rejected the BJP plea to hand over the TRS MLAs poaching case to the CBI but made the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the case independent.
The court also ruled that a single judge will monitor the investigation into the case relating to the arrest of three alleged agents of the BJP for “luring” four MLAs of ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) into BJP fold.
A division bench headed by Chief Justice Justice Ujwal Bhuyan directed that SIT headed by Hyderabad Police Commissioner C. V. Anand not to brief the state and its bosses about the progress in the state. The SIT has been asked to report to court and no one else. The team has also been directed not to leak information to media.
The court passed the orders while disposing of the petition of the BJP seeking probe by the CBI.
It asked the SIT to submit a report to the court on November 29 on the progress of the investigation.
Ramachandra Bharati alias Satish Sharma, Simhayaji and Nandakumar were arrested by the Cyberabad police from a farmhouse at Moinabad near Hyderabad on the night of October 26 when they were allegedly trying to lure four MLAs of TRS with offers of huge money.
Cyberabad police conducted the raid on a tip-off by Pilot Rohit Reddy, one of the MLAs. He alleged that the accused offered Rs 100 crore to him and Rs 50 crore each to three others.
The accused were booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Prevention of Corruption Act.
The high court on October 29 had stayed the ongoing investigation into the case and asked the state government and other respondents to file the counter on BJP petition. The court lifted the stay on November 8.
The state government on November 9 constituted a SIT to probe the case. Headed by Hyderabad police commissioner, it includes six other police officers.
Addressing a press conference on November 3, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao had released evidence in the case including video recordings of the conversation between the accused and the MLAs.
The accused had mentioned names of some top BJP leaders including Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
BJP leader Parmender Reddy had filed a petition in the high court seeking CBI probe as he voiced the apprehension that the investigation under the state government will not be impartial.