When the judge wanted to know what had the DVAC done so far though more than four months had elapsed since the petitioner lodged the complaint on March 10, State Public Prosecutor (in-charge) C. Emilias replied that the complaint had been forwarded to the Chief Secretary. Besides, a copy of the covering letter written to the Chief Secretary had been marked to the complainant.

Not satisfied with the reply, the judge asked sternly: “Is it sufficient to forward the complaint and mark a copy to the petitioner? Did you conduct any preliminary enquiry?”

The State PP responded to the question with an emphatic “no” and the judge asked “why?” There was no answer and Mr. Justice Jayachandran threw the next question and sought to know the action taken with regard to the alleged links between Mr. Panneerselvam and controversial businessman J. Sekar Reddy.

Referring to a specific statement in the complaint regarding a diary, recovered by Income Tax officials from Mr. Reddy, containing crucial details regarding his alleged links with Mr. Panneerselvam, the judge said: “Some other information is also furnished by them regarding a diary seized during the IT raid…”

To this, the State PP said: “That diary is now with the CBI.” The reply prompted the judge to say: “Then, let this complaint also be probed by the CBI.”

Immediately, Additional Advocate General C. Manishankar, also representing the DVAC, intervened and requested the judge to grant him time till Monday for perusing the petition and submit his detailed reply. Acceding to his request, the judge adjourned further hearing on the case by a week.

However, K. Srinivasan, Special Public Prosecutor for CBI cases, told the judge that the case being investigated by them against Mr. Reddy was related to recovery of huge cache of Rs. 2,000 notes immediately after demonetisation of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes.

“This issue (raised in the present petition filed by Mr. Bharathi) is not connected with it,” he said.

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