Bengaluru: The High Court of Karnataka has granted bail to a seer of a Karnataka Math, who is the third accused in the case of cheating a businessman into believing that he would be given a BJP ticket in the recently held assembly election in the state.
The bench of Justice Vishwajit Shetty on Wednesday ordered granting bail to Abhinava Halashree Swami of Hirehadagali Halaswamy Math, Vijayanagar district, after hearing the arguments of the seer's advocate and the government prosecutor.
During the hearing of the petition, the government prosecutor brought to the notice of the bench that the investigating officers had filed a charge sheet to the trial court on Wednesday.
Arun Shyam, senior advocate for the petitioner, argued that since the charge sheet has been submitted, the investigation has been completed. This makes it unnecessary for the seer to be in custody or face investigation.
The money alleged to have been received by the petitioner has already been seized by the investigating officers and handed over to the Magistrate Court.
The charges against the petitioner are punishable by less than seven years and the veracity of the allegations against him is yet to be proved in trial. Therefore, he should be granted bail, the senior advocate said.
Accepting the arguments, the court granted bail to the seer.
Businessman Govind Babu Poojari had lodged a complaint with the police, alleging that he was cheated by the accused who had taken Rs five crore of money, promising that he would be given a BJP ticket to contest from Byndoor constituency in Udupi district.
The accused Hindu activists Chaitra, Srikanth, Ramesh, Gagan, Prajwal and Dhanraj were arrested by the CCB police.
On September 19, 2023, Halashree Swami was arrested by the CCB police in Cuttack, Odisha, on the charge of receiving Rs.1.5 crore from the complainant.
An Additional City Civil and Sessions Court refused to grant him bail, following which he approached the High Court.