Jaya death probe: HC rejects Apollo's plea

The Madras High Court Monday has refused to pass interim orders on a plea by Apollo Hospitals seeking to restrain the Justice Arumughaswamy Commission of Inquiry from looking into the correctness and adequacy of the medical treatment given to former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa before her death in 2016. The next date of hearing in the matter is February 15. The hospital claimed that the Justice Arumughaswamy Commission is 'prejudiced'.

In its plea, Apollo said that the hospital will be subjected to "grave hardship and irreparable harm" if the proceedings are not stayed. "The real danger of prejudice and bias is apparent in the manner in which the probe panel is conducting the examination of witnesses," it added, seeking a stay on the Justice Arumughaswamy Commission's proceedings until a medical board is formed in connection with Jayalalithaa death probe.

When the plea came up for hearing before a division bench of justices R Subbiah and Krishnan Ramasamy, the hospital's counsel said they were not challenging the Tamil Nadu-government appointed inquiry commission but only saying it should "not conduct trial". Senior counsel ARL Sundaresan, who appeared for the panel, submitted that the commission at every stage had given an opportunity to the hospital's counsel to respond.

The bench then directed the commission to file a counter and posted the matter for further hearing on February 15.