PUDUCHERRY: Kanchi Sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswathi, prime accused in the Sankararaman murder case, appeared before a trial court here on Monday and claimed that the charges were foisted upon the seers.
Accompanied by his junior Vijayendra Saraswathi, also an accused in the case, the seer told Principal District and Sessions Judge T Ramaswamy that the statements of the prosecution witnesses were untrue.The “charges were foisted” against them, the Sankaracharya told the Sessions Court judge.All the 24 accused appeared before the judge following the orders of the court.The questioning of the seers began at 3 pm. The judge, who permitted the accused to be seated considering their age and ailments, went on to ask 554 questions running into 196 pages), which took almost one-hour -and-40 minutes.Judge T Ramaswamy then directed all the accused to be present at 3 pm on Tuesday to continue with the questioning.Sankararaman, the manager of the Sri Varadarajaperumal Temple in Kancheepuram, was found murdered on September 3, 2004. The trial was shifted from Chengalpattu to Puducherry on November 28, 2005, following a Supreme Court order on a writ petition filed by the Sankaracharya.The examination of witnesses started on April 2, 2009. Special Public Prosecutor N Devadoss had completed the cross examination of all the prosecution witnesses on July 11, this year. A total of 189 witnesses have been examined, out of which till now 81 have turned hostile.