Panaji: In a late development, South Goa additional District and Sessions judge P Sawaikar on Wednesday stayed the warrant issued by a trial court to search the official residence of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar at 10 Akbar Road in New Delhi for a former Goa minister, who has been reported missing for over a fortnight.
The order staying the search warrant was issued late on Wednesday night according to chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar.
“It was been stayed. The police had gone in appeal against the (lower) court’s direction to issue search warrant,” Parsekar confirmed to IANS over telephone.
Following the stay granted late on Wednesday, the Additional District Sessions court is expected to hear arguments over issue of the search warrant on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, the Judicial Magistrate First Class (Margao) Bosco Roberts, was conducting proceedings related to the formal arrest of former Archives and Archaeology minister Pacheco, whose conviction for an assault was upheld by the Supreme Court earlier this month.
Pacheco has been untraceable and missing for over two weeks.
The search warrant had directed police to search Parrikar’s official residence in Delhi to trace Pacheco after the petitioner, lawyer-activist Aires Rodrigues, told the trial court that Pacheco was seen in the vicinity of 10, Akbar Road in New Delhi, Parrikar’s official residence.
In his reply submitted to the court, police officer Uttam Rautdessai, in charge of the Colva police station which has been tasked with serving the arrest warrant on Pacheco, said the investigation revealed that the former minister had left Goa for Delhi on April 8. He was booked at Hotel Royal Plaza at Ashoka Road in the national capital till April 12.
Rautdessai, however, conceded that his team was unable to arrest the former minister when in Delhi. He also said that police were in the process of tracking down the bank accounts of the former minister and trying to track down his recent expenses.
Pacheco, who faces six-month imprisonment and a fine of Rs.1,500 for assaulting a junior engineer of the state electricity department in 2006, has been missing and untraceable ever since the Supreme Court upheld his conviction earlier this month.