HC show cause notice to prosecutor for contemptuous remarks

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Bombay-HCThe Bombay High Court has issued a show cause notice to a public prosecutor, appearing in multi-crore housing scam against former state minister Suresh Jain, for making contemptuous remarks against the court.

Justice A M Thipsay of the Aurangabad bench of the high court on January 27 issued notice to prosecutor N D Suryawanshi for making contemptuous remarks against the court.

In December last year, Justice Thipsay had sought clarification from special public prosecutor Suryawanshi for making false statement that the Maharashtra government has decided that there is no need for sanction to prosecute Jain.

Suryawanshi had told a sessions court in Jalgaon that the state government has come to a conclusion that there is no need for sanction to prosecute Jain in the 2006 Jalgaon mass housing project scam. Based on the statement, the session’s court took cognisance of the case and framed charges.

Jain approached the HC challenging the session’s court order taking cognisance. Jain said that the case against him is non-maintainable due to want of sanction. He also said a letter procured under RTI says the proposal seeking sanction to prosecute him is still pending before the government.

Replying to the high court notice, Suryawanshi clarified that in his statement he had not said the state government, but said that he himself had come to the conclusion that sanction was not required.

Along with the clarification, Suryawanshi filed an application taking objection to the manner in which Justice Thipsay dealt with the matter and alleged that the court had made derogatory remarks against him. Suryawanshi in his application sought the court to take back its remarks.

“The contents of the application are offensive and strange. Such type of contemptuous application does not call for an explanation to be given by the court. However, I am of the view that the present application needs to be sternly dealt with,” Justice Thipsay said.

“In my opinion, this is a fit case where action for having committed contempt of this court should be initiated against the applicant. However, considering that he is a Special Public Prosecutor, instead of initiating an action forthwith, I think it fit to grant one opportunity to the applicant to show cause against the proposed action,” he said.

Suryawanshi has been directed to file reply by February 11.