Two Haryana legislators denied anti-arrest shield

Chandigarh, Sep 12 (IANS) The Punjab and Haryana High Court Thursday rejected the anticipatory bail plea of two Haryana legislators in a case related to abetment of a village headman's suicide and told them to appear in the trial court within a week.

Legislators O.P. Jain and Zile Ram Sharma, accused of abetting the suicide of village headman Karam Singh in Karnal district June 2011, had sought anticipatory bail after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court in Panchkula issued non-bailable warrants against them last month.

The high court, which earlier stayed their arrest till Sep 10, said the legislators should first appear before the CBI court and then seek regular bail.

Both legislators have been on the run since the CBI filed a chargesheet against them last month. They had earlier refused to accept court summons.

Jain was Haryana's transport and tourism minister while Sharma was a chief parliamentary secretary (CPS) before the two were forced to resign in June 2011.

The two legislators were booked June 2011 following the mysterious death of Karam Singh near Karnal town, 130 km from here. His body, with stab wounds, was found near the National Dairy Research Institute.

The CBI filed a chargesheet against them earlier this month.

Just a day before his murder, the village headman, who was in his late 50s, gave a complaint against Jain and Sharma to Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and police about an alleged fraud committed on him.

Karam Singh accused Jain and Sharma of duping him of nearly Rs.13 lakh on the pretext of providing government jobs to his son and two nephews. But they neither provided the jobs nor returned the money, his complaint said.

A witness to the headman's death, Chamail Singh, was also found dead under mysterious circumstances a week after his body was found.

After the Haryana Police investigation into the murder case was found shoddy, the high court, in August last year, handed over the probe to the CBI.

Police had given a "clean chit" to both the leaders, who were part of the Hooda government, and were trying to pass off the murder as suicide.

Matches