Gujarat High Court: In a special criminal application filed by Lieutenant- Governor (‘L-G') of Delhi Vinai Kumar Saxena, seeking stay on proceedings against him for assault charges alleged by activist Medha Patkar. A plea was filed to set aside the Ahmedabad Magistrate Court Order, wherein the trial against the L-G in assault case was refused to be kept in abeyance. The Single Judge Bench of M.K. Thakker ordered interim stay on the proceedings pending before the Ahmedabad Court against Delhi L-G.
The Narmada Bachao Andolan activist Medha Patkar had alleged the present L-G, Delhi of assaulting her in 2002 at Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad.
The L-G had moved to the Trial Court seeking immunity from criminal proceedings against him on grounds of immunity granted to him during the term of office, however, the said plea was rejected.
Thus, aggrieved by the order of the Trial Court, the L-G had moved to the High Court, and it was submitted that he was protected from criminal proceedings by Article 361 (2) (3) of the Constitution of India. The Court had also paid attention to the Order passed by the Court below, wherein it was observed that if the protection would have been granted, then after demitting the Constitutional Office, the examination of the witnesses will be recorded again, and the trial would be delayed.
The Court issued notice returnable on 19-06-2023 and granted relief by putting an interim stay on the criminal proceedings pending before the Ahmedabad Court.
[Vinai Kumar Saxena v. State of Gujarat, 2023 SCC OnLine Guj 1454, Order Dated: 23-05-2023]
With Inputs from Press.