Businessman barges into courtroom

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Old 08-Jul-2010
Businessman barges into courtroom

Businessman barges into courtroom, alleges danger from Punjab Vigilance chief

Chandigarh, July 7
Fear writ large on his beaded brow, Delhi businessman Ashish Kumar created flutter in the Punjab and Haryana High Court after he barged into the Chief Justice’s courtroom just before noon.

As the lawyers and the litigants present in the courtroom watched nearly shocked, Ashish Kumar almost frantically cried his life was in danger from Punjab vigilance chief Sumedh Singh Saini - an assertion, which found an echo in the subsequent court proceedings as well. Kumar went up to the extent of expressing apprehension of elimination in an encounter.

Ashish Kumar and Saini have long pending dispute. Kumar’s 92-year-old mother Amar Kaur is the complainant in a 1994 triple murder case against Saini pending at Delhi’s Tis Hazari court. He has all along been saying his brother Vinod Kumar, brother-in-law Ashok Kumar and their driver Mukhtiar Singh were kidnapped and later eliminated; and the CBI found Saini and three other police officials responsible for their disappearance.

His family was chief financier to Saini Motors, run by the divorced husband of Sumedh Singh Saini’s sister, Ashish Kumar has been asserting.

As Ashish Kumar appeared before the Bench of Chief Justice Mukul Mudgal and Justice Ajay Tewari at about 11.45 am with a bunch of documents, he categorically named Saini. Taking a serious view of the assertions, the Bench directed the fixing of his plea before the appropriate Bench today itself, and even directed a court official to accompany him to the branch concerned.

His restlessly shifting eyes viewed everyone with suspicion, as later in the afternoon he appeared before the Bench of Justice Daya Chaudhary. As his case came up for hearing at about 4.15 pm, Ashish whispered in a voice choked with emotion, “Saini wants to kill me; my life is in danger”.

After Justice Chaudhary question him on the urgency and immediate provocation behind filing the plea, he said Saini sought exemption from appearance before the court on security grounds and reference was made to an intelligence report saying he had links with the militants.

“Saini can pick me up and show encounter,” he murmured. As Justice Chaudhary expressed her doubts on the veracity of the assertion, he said his brother was picked up from the high court. Brother-in-law and driver too were picked and killed.

Ashish told the court he had moved the high court in 1994 in the matter, and again recently moved an application for placing him under suspension. Letters were also shot off to the “ministry” and Punjab government.

After giving him a patient hearing, Justice Chaudhary adjourned the hearing for a day to enable her to go through the previous petitions.

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