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Karnataka High Court Halts Transfer of Jayalalithaa’s Seized Gold

Karnataka High Court Halts Transfer of Jayalalithaa's Seized Gold
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In a recent development, the Karnataka High Court has temporarily halted the directive from the CBI special court to transfer 27 kgs of gold ornaments seized from the Chennai residence of the late former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in 1997 to Tamil Nadu authorities. The stay was granted after a petition filed by Deepa Jayakumar, Jayalalithaa’s niece from Chennai, who asserted herself and her brother J Deepak as the legal heirs of the property.

The high court has adjourned the hearing to March 26, allowing Deepa Jayakumar time to file objections against the special court’s orders. Special Public Prosecutor Kiran S Javali confirmed the stay, stating, “I will file my objections by then.”

In February, the special court had directed officials from Tamil Nadu, including the principal secretary of the home department and an IGP from the vigilance and anti-corruption wing, to be present on March 7 to transfer the gold articles. However, Deepa Jayakumar filed a petition seeking to set aside these orders, arguing that she and her brother are the legal heirs of Jayalalithaa’s property.

The petition highlighted that at the time of Jayalalithaa’s death in December 2016, the appeal against her conviction was pending before the Supreme Court, which had observed that her charges had stayed abated. Deepa Jayakumar urged the court to nullify the special court’s orders to hand over the gold ornaments to Tamil Nadu. These ornaments were initially seized from Jayalalithaa’s Poes Garden residence and later moved to Bengaluru following the establishment of a special court to handle the disproportionate assets case against Jayalalithaa and others.

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