The Supreme Court on Tuesday sought a response from the TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu on a plea filed by Andhra Pradesh government challenging a high court order that granted him regular bail in the skill development corporation scam case.
A bench of justices Bela M Trivedi and SC Sharma directed Naidu not to participate in public rallies and meetings until the next hearing on December 8.
The Andhra Pradesh High Court had converted Naidu’s interim medical bail into absolute bail, citing his age, old age-related ailments, non-flight risk, and other factors. The high court ordered his release on regular bail and maintained certain conditions, such as refraining from making public comments related to the scam case or organizing/participating in public rallies and meetings, until November 28. These conditions were scheduled to be relaxed from November 29.
The state government, seeking to set aside the high court verdict, argued that Naidu is an influential person who ensured that two key associates, including a government servant, have fled the country.
The Andhra Pradesh High Court had granted bail to Naidu on November 20, emphasizing that the discretion to grant bail should be exercised judiciously in a humane and compassionate manner. Naidu, who recently underwent cataract surgery at L V Prasad Hospital in Hyderabad, was initially arrested on September 9. He was released on interim medical bail on October 31, which has now been regularized.
Naidu is accused of misappropriating funds from the Skill Development Corporation, leading to an alleged loss of over Rs 300 crore to the state exchequer.
On October 17, the Supreme Court denied interim bail to Naidu and announced it would pronounce a verdict on his plea challenging the high court order that refused to quash the FIR against him in the skill development corporation scam case.