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2G scam case: Delhi HC reserves order on plea for early hearing on appeal against acquittal

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New Delhi | September 22, 2020 6:12:32 PM IST
The Delhi High Court on Tuesday reserved its order on the applications filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) seeking early hearing in the appeal against the order in the 2G scam case.

A single-judge bench of Justice Brijesh Sethi reserved the order on the plea after all the parties concluded their arguments in the matter.

All the respondents, including former telecom minister A Raja and businessman Shahid Balwa strongly opposed the application for early hearing in the 2G appeal case.

Advocate Sanjay Jain, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) appearing for the CBI, argued that the matter has a substantial public interest and as the judge who has heard the matter is due to demit his office on November 30 this year, the court may grant an early hearing and hear the matter expeditiously.

Advocate Manu Sharma, appearing for A Raja, argued that there was no cause to grant an out-of-turn urgent hearing to the appeals moved by CBI and ED amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The investigation agency has only spoken about public interest in their application but has not substantiated the same with arguments, he said.

Advocate Vijay Aggarwal along with advocates Mudit Jain and Anshul Agarwal, representing Shahid Balwa and several others, also vehemently opposed the applications and said that the CBI has not explained why their appeal should be given precedence over appeals against conviction due to which the accused persons are languishing in jail especially for the year.

Aggarwal also submitted that allowing the application for the early hearing shall be against the interest of justice as the respondents will not be afforded adequate opportunity since the records runs into lakhs of pages.

He said each person will not even get 0.89 days to argue his or her case as the judge is scheduled to demit his office in November. "Justice hurried is justice buried," he added.

Advocate Tarannum Cheema, appearing for Sanjay Chandra, argued that her client is in Tihar jail in another matter and has not been served with copy of the application. Other advocates appearing for the respondents in the case also argued that the application is misconceived.

Justice Brijesh Sethi, who is hearing the appeal of ED and CBI against the trial court order which acquitted all the accused in the 2G case, had recently issued notice to all respondents to file their reply on the early hearing plea filed by the CBI and the ED.

The two central agencies had moved the Delhi High Court in March 2018 against the acquittal of all accused in the 2G spectrum case which came to light in 2017. They had recently filed an appeal seeking early hearing on their plea against the acquittal.

In December 2017, a special CBI Court had acquitted DMK politicians A Raja, Kanimozhi, and 15 others, implicated in the 2G spectrum case. (ANI)

 
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