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New Delhi [India], August 19 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Thursday granted relief to former Karnataka minister and mining baron Gali Janardhan Reddy, accused in an illegal mining case, by allowing him to visit and stay in Bellary district in Karnataka and Kadapa and Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh.
A Bench comprising Justice Vineet Saran and Justice Dinesh Maheshwari modified its January 20, 2015 bail order to remove restrictions on his visit and stay.
The apex court modified the bail condition subject to Reddy intimating about his visit to the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) of Bellary, Kadapa and Anantapur.
Relaxing his bail conditions, the Bench allowed Reddy to visit these districts for a period of eight weeks.
"Considering the facts and circumstances of the case and that trial has not even commenced and that petitioner (Reddy) has not violated any bail condition even when he visited Bellary, it is directed that the condition imposed to not visit these three places in bail order be modified," the apex court said.
The trial court shall make every endeavour to expedite the trial, the Bench said, adding that these matters cannot be kept hanging like this and must be handled expeditiously.
Reddy was arrested in September 2011 and was granted bail in January 2015. While granting bail, the apex court had imposed a condition on him not to visit these districts. Later, he filed an application seeking to relax the bail conditions imposed in him.
Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Reddy, contended that the charges are yet to be framed in the case and trial has not commenced yet.
He contended that trial has not commenced in the last six-and-a-half years since Reddy was granted bail.
Reddy has not violated any conditions laid down by this court in the past more than six years since bail was granted, Rohatgi said, adding that he was also allowed to visit Bellary and he never violated any condition.
Reddy was represented by Jain Singh & Co. Law firm through advocates Mayank Jain, Parmatma singh and Madhur Jain.
Appearing for the CBI, Additional Solicitor General Madhavi Divan opposed the plea of Reddy saying that Reddy has been chargesheeted "in a case relating to influence and bribe for the purposes of bail and subverting the judicial process and influencing the judges".
Modification in bail conditions will have adverse effect on the trial, Divan said. Saying that Reddy is enjoying liberty and can't only visit these three districts, ASG argued that out of 300 witnesses, 47 reside in Bellary.
Reddy could not cherry-pick what bail conditions he wished to adhere to and what not to adhere to, she added.
The Bench now posted the matter in third week of November. (ANI)