Panaji: South Goa Additional District and Sessions Judge P. Sawaikar has stayed the warrant issued by a trial court to search Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar's official residence to look for missing former Goa minister Miccky Pacheco.
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.
The order, staying the search warrant was issued on Wednesday night, said Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar.
"It was been stayed. Police had gone to appeal against the (lower) court's direction to issue search warrant," Parsekar told IANS over telephone.
Pacheco has been untraceable and missing for over two weeks.
Following the stay, the Additional District Sessions Court is expected to hear arguments over the issue of the search warrant on Thursday.
Earlier, 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.
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.
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.