Sunday, February 5, 2023

Supreme Court overrules Madras High Court order, restores criminal complaint against TN Minister Senthil Balaji

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The Supreme Court on Thursday restored a criminal complaint against Tamil Nadu Electricity Minister Thiru Senthil Balaji and others, over charges of taking bribe from job aspirants on false promise of appointment to the Metro Transport Corporation (MTC).

The Bench led by Justice S. Abdul Nazeer set aside the order passed by the Madras High Court, which quashed the proceedings against the Minister and three others, after being apprised that the complainant and 13 alleged victims of the recruitment scam had arrived at a settlement and have been repaid the money.

Calling the High Court verdict as ‘unsustainable,’ the Apex Court observed that the state government should look into the prayer made by the intervenor, seeking formation of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the allegations.

Earlier on September 2, the Apex Court Bench of Justice Abdul Nazeer and Justice V. Ramasubramanian had reserved order in the case.

The Madras High Court had observed that while the case was still at the trial stage, the parties had decided to solve the dispute amicably by way of compromise.

The Single-Judge Bench of Justice N. Nirmal Kumar had observed that the Court had enquired both the parties and was satisfied that they have come to an amicable settlement between themselves.

Even though the offences involved were not compoundable in nature, no purpose would be solved by keeping the case pending, added Justice Kumar.

A case was registered against Balaji for taking bribe during 2011 and 2015, when he was the Transport Minister in the AIADMK government.

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