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Sasi’s lawyer attributes motive to panel counsels
Tensions have risen between two camps of lawyers at the Arumughaswamy Enquiry Commission probing the death of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa. VK Sasikala’s counsel Raja Senthoor Pandian alleged that the lawyers of the Commission pursued a line of questioning that appeared to tarnish the image and reputation of the late chief minister.
The allegations came about after Jayalalithaa’s assistant Poongundran and Sasikala’s aide Karthikeyan appeared once again before the Commission. Questions regarding incidents in 2011 when Jayalalithaa is alleged to have had a fallout with Sasikala and her extended family and their subsequent reunion after Sasikala distanced herself from her family were raised. On completion of the examination, the lawyers from the Sasikala camp objected to the questions posed by the Commission.
However, both the camps agreed on the issue of Tughlak magazine editor S Gurumurthy’s appearing before the Commission. Gurumurthy had been sent summons twice but responded through his lawyers that he was not aware of any information pertaining to Jayalalithaa’s death. He asked for his summons to be withdrawn. But lawyers from both sides highlighted an old video of Gurumurthy calling for a probe into the death of Jayalalithaa, before the formation of the Commission. They submitted that it would be necessary for Gurumurthy to depose before the commission on that basis.
Jayalalithaa’s niece Deepa has also requested the panel to include her lawyer as part of the proceedings and during the visit to Apollo Hospitals. She has stated that as one of the two living heirs of Jayalalithaa, her attempts to visit her during the hospitalisation were rejected and that her request is in the interest of uncovering the truth.