Telangana Chief Secretary claims funds not for contempt of court cases

By Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Telangana Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar on Thursday, August 5, 2021, prayed to the Telangana High Court to withdraw its interim orders restraining the release of nearly Rs 59 crore funds, saying they were not meant for him to fight contempt of court cases but were intended to be paid to those from whom land had been acquired for public purposes.

As soon as the court took up the case, advocate general BS Prasad said the petitioner had tried to mislead the court by stating that the money was meant for the Chief Secretary to finance his contempt of court cases.

ALSO READ: Telangana HC issues notice to Chief Secretary for sanctioning Rs 58 crore to fight contempt cases

The bench, however, stated that the government order (GO) issued regarding the release of funds gave the impression that the money was meant for contempt of court cases, and adjourned the case to Monday.
On Wednesday, the High Court had issued a notice to Somesh Kumar in his personal capacity, and also to several bureaucrats, based on a PIL filed by Prabhakar Chouti, a lecturer from Mahabubnagar, questioning GO No: 208 issued on June 7.  The advocate representing the lecturer contended that the GO granted Rs 58.96 crore towards legal expenses for defending Somesh Kumar in about 200 contempt of court cases pending in the High Court.

The HC, expressing surprise over the way the GO had been drafted, said if one read it, one would get the impression that it was to help the Chief Secretary defend his cases in court. The court asked whether there existed a practice to send a draft of the GO for vetting by the legal department before it was issued. The case was adjourned to Monday.

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