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BRS MLAs poaching case: Supreme Court to hear on Feb 17 plea against CBI probe

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to take up on February 17, a plea filed by Telangana Police challenging the high court order upholding the CBI probe into the alleged criminal conspiracy behind an attempt to poach BRS (Bharata) MLAs by the BJP.

Senior advocate Sidharth Luthra mentioned the matter for urgent hearing before a bench headed by Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud.

Luthra contended that the matter needs urgent hearing because after the CBI takes over the probe then the matter would become infructuous. Declining to give an earlier date for hearing, the bench, also comprising Justices P.S. Narasimha and J.B. Pardiwala, said, “We will reverse the (high court’s) order, if necessary”.

A division bench of the Telangana High Court on February 6 upheld the earlier order of a single judge on December 26, 2022 transferring the case to CBI.

The plea argued that the high court did not appreciate that the CBI directly works under the Centre and is under the control of the office of the Prime Minister and the Home Ministry. The state government alleged the involvement of some top BJP leaders to poach its four MLAs, was an attempt to topple the government.

The plea said: “The Bharatiya Janata Party is in power in the Central Government and the allegations in the FIR are squarely and directly against the said party adopting illegal and criminal steps and methods to destabilize the Government of Telangana, the Hon’ble High Court therefore could not have entrusted the investigation to CBI in any case.”

The plea further added, “The High Court has unnecessarily drawn conclusion that release of the CD by the Chief Minister on 03.11.2022 amounted to interference with the investigation and therefore concluded that investigation was not fair and violated the rights of accused for fair investigation”.

Three persons, Ramachandra Bharati alias Satish Sharma, Nandu Kumar and Simhayaji Swamy, named as accused have already been granted bail.

According to the FIR, MLA Rohith Reddy alleged that the accused in October last year, offered him Rs 100 crore and in return the legislator had to leave the BRS. It was also alleged that they asked Reddy to bring some more BRS MLAs by offering Rs 50 crore each to join the BJP.

In November last year, the state government had formed an SIT, comprising state police officers to investigate the matter.