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Delhi HC asks assembly panel not to insist on CS's appearance before it

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The High court today directed an not to insist that appear before it and said that the panel's move to issue a notice to the top bureaucrat seemed an attempt to circumvent the process of law.

Justice questioned the move of Legislative Assembly's to issue a notice to the despite making a statement before the court on March 5 that it will not proceed in the matter concerning the bureaucrat till further orders.

The court said the committee's move to issue notice seemed an attempt to circumvent the process of law.

The had yesterday moved the high court after he was served with a notice by the of the Assembly asking him to appear before it over a complaint against him.

"After giving a statement on March 5, the complainant (Question and Reference Committee) immediately issued notice notice to the Chief Secretary, asking him to appear before it today.

"What was the urgency of issuing notice now. Ask your client (Committee) not to do this. Tell your client that it is coming out as if you are trying to circumvent the process of law. Wait for the outcome of the main petition pending here," the court told the of the committee.

The court suggested the committee to withdraw the March 6 notice, in which it had asked the chief secretary to appear before it today at 3 PM.

To this Manish Vashisht, appearing for the assembly committee, said they cannot withdraw the notice as it has been issued against two other officers also but assured the court that they will not ask for the personal appearance of the chief secretary and some other staff from his office can bring certain relevant documents for the scheduled meeting.

Senior Sanjay Jain, appearing for the Chief Secretary, contended that it was a clear case of attempt to browbeat and intimidate him.

He further said issuance of notice amounts to overreaching the process of law and it was a contemptuous act as it should not have been done when the matter pending before the high court.

Senior Sandeep Sethi, appearing for the Lieutenant Governor, said the for the had made a statement before the court on March 5 and the panel should have stood by it.

He said it was a matter of propriety and he was shocked that the has issued a notice to the chief secretary.

The high court had yesterday said that Prakash was being harassed by MLAs by "hook or crook" for pursuing his complaint of alleged assault during a meeting at the chief minister's residence last month.

The chief secretary was served a notice by the for skipping a meeting on February 20, which was scheduled a day after he was allegedly assaulted by two MLAs -- Amanatullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal. They both are in jail.

He also did not attend the subsequent meetings on February 21 and 23, following which the notice was issued.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, March 08 2018. 13:25 IST