HC probe for Raskesh Asthana

Court re­fuses to quash FIR against Spl Di­rec­tor, vacates or­der grant­ing pro­tec­tion against crim­i­nal pro­ceed­ings

DNA (Delhi) - - FRONT PAGE - DNA Cor­re­spon­dent cor­re­spon­[email protected]­dia.net

New Delhi: In a set­back to Cen­tral Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion (CBI) Spe­cial Di­rec­tor Rakesh Asthana, the Delhi High Court has re­fused to quash FIR against him and or­dered the agency to in­ves­ti­gate the charges. The court also di­rected the CBI to com­plete the in­ves­ti­ga­tion within 10 weeks and file a charge sheet.

The HC also re­jected the con­tention the CBI should have taken the gov­ern­ment’s sanc­tion be­fore reg­is­ter­ing the case, un­der­lin­ing that when a cog­nis­able of­fence is al­leged to have been com­mit­ted, there must be a probe.

In his pe­ti­tion, Asthana had chal­lenged the FIR say­ing it was mo­ti­vated at the be­hest of his boss, CBI di­rec­tor Alok Verma who was sacked by the govt Thurs­day.

HC said the al­le­ga­tion of mala fide raised against Verma is not made out. Jus­tice Na­jmi Waziri also va­cated its Oct 23, 2018 in­terim or­der di­rect­ing the agency to main­tain “sta­tus quo” on pro­ceed­ings against Asthana, who had sought di­rec­tions for no co­er­cive steps in con­nec­tion with a case of al­leged bribery.

It ruled sanc­tion to pros­e­cute Asthana and Devin­der Ku­mar was not re­quired into the mat­ter, keep­ing in view the facts of this case.

The court had re­served judg­ment on Dec 20, 2018, on var­i­ous pe­ti­tions after hear­ing sub­mis­sions of coun­sel for the CBI, Asthana, agency di­rec­tor Alok Verma, Deputy Su­per­in­ten­dent Deven­der Ku­mar, and Joint Di­rec­tor AK Sharma.

Asthana, Ku­mar and an al­leged mid­dle­man Manoj Prasad had moved court seek­ing the quash­ing of the FIR.

The FIR was filed after Hyderabad-based busi­ness­man Sathish Babu Sana claimed he had paid bribes to get re­lief in a case re­lated to meat-ex­porter Moin Qureshi and made al­le­ga­tions of cor­rup­tion and ex­tor­tion against Asthana.

The CVC is nei­ther the ap­point­ing au­thor­ity nor the re­mov­ing au­thor­ity for the CBI chief

Ab­hishek Manu Singhvi, Con­gress spokesper­son

It’s a month since 15 min­ers have been trapped in a mine in Megha­laya

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