Breather for Delhi L-G Anil Baijal over prosecution panel choices

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By Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The Delhi High Court on Friday granted further time to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal for filing response to a petition filed by Delhi government against his order appointing a panel of police chosen lawyers as special public prosecutors to argue cases related to farmers protest and Delhi riots.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh was told by the Delhi government that on 
account of the L-G appointing police chosen lawyers as special public prosecutors (SPPs) for cases related to this year’s Republic Day violence and last year’s riots, there was now “no difference” between the investigating agency and prosecution.

Senior lawyers appearing for Delhi government said that in the criminal justice system, prosecutors are “officers of the court” but now there is “complete synergy” between them and the police.  “There is no difference between the police and prosecution today. What is the fairness left in the entire criminal procedure today?” questioned senior advocate Rahul Mehra who appeared for the Delhi government. He stated that the appointment of prosecutors was in the domain of the government and the L-G was bound by the aid and advice of the council of ministers.

Appearing for the Delhi government, senior advocate  Abhishek Manu Singhvi stated that while the matter was of “great urgency”, the respondents – L-G and Centre – were yet to file their response. “This is a matter of great urgency. The court gave four weeks for filing counter.

The court granted time to the respondents to file their response and listed the case for further hearing on January 28. On August 27, the court had issued notice on the Delhi government’s plea asking the Lieutenant Governor and the Centre to file response to the petition seeking stay on the decision. 



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