Madras HC stays job racketeering case against Minister Senthil Balaji

The counsel produced affidavits of 20 alleged victims of job racketing who had claimed that they had got back their money and not interested in prosecuting the case anymore.

The Madras High Court has stayed all further proceedings pending against Electricity Minister V. Senthil Balaji in a case booked for having allegedly cheated many by promising them jobs as drivers and conductors in State transport corporation when he served as Transport Minister in Jayalalithaa’s cabinet between 2011 and 2015.

Justice M. Nirmal Kumar granted the interim stay following a criminal revision petition preferred by the Minister. Representing the petitioner, senior counsel S. Prabakaran said a compromise had been reached between the parties and the issue had been settled amicably. Therefore, he urged the court to compound the offences.

The senior counsel also brought it to the notice of the court that as many as four different cases had been registered by the police with similar allegations and that two of them had already been quashed. He said, the High Court had quashed one case on the basis of the compromise reached between the complainants and the accused.

“This case is also of similar nature,” the counsel said and produced affidavits of 20 alleged victims of job racketing who had claimed that they had got back their money and not interested in prosecuting the case anymore. He said those individuals were ready to appear before the court and depose that they do not want the prosecution to continue.

However, some of the victims in the fourth case wanted to get implead in present revision petition filed by the Minister, as well as another accused in the case, and oppose their plea to compound the offences.

Observing that it would be appropriate to stay the proceedings pending before the special court for trying cases against legislators until a final decision could be taken on compounding the offence, the judge granted the interim order and adjourned the Minister’s revision petition for further hearing to October 22.

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