Supreme Court to hear CVC’s version of its preliminary inquiry


CBI corruption caseSupreme Court to hear CVC's version of its preliminary inquiry against Agency chief Alok Verma tomorrow

The Supreme Cout will hear the version of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), which was directed to finish its preliminary inquiry against CBI Director Alok Verma. The hearing comes two days after Verma, came before the CVC panel headed by KV Chowdhary and refuted allegations leveled against him by CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana.

Verma’s plea, which had been seeking by a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi on previous occasions, is now listed for hearing on November 12 before a two-judge bench inclusive the CJI and Justice S K Kaul.

The court had appointed former major court judge A K Patnaik to supervise the ongoing inquiry of CVC against Verma.

Besides publishing notices to the Centre and the CVC on the plea of Verma, the apex court, on October 26, had also set a deadline of two weeks for the CVC to complete the preliminary inquiry against the CBI director.

It had also barred IPS officer M Nageswara Rao, who has been given interim charge of the CBI, from taking any final decision.

The top court on Monday would also peruse the decisions given by Rao from October 23, including the transfer of investigations and change of investigating officers and may pass some appropriate orders on them.

It had stated that a list of all the decisions taken by Rao between “October 23, 2018, and up to this hour comprising decisions with regard to transfer of investigations, change of investigating officer(s) etc will be furnished to the court in a sealed cover on or before November 12, 2018 whereafter orders, as would be appropriate, will be passed by the court.”

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CVC, had proposed that the CVC has been conducting an inquiry into the allegations made in the August 24 note/letter of the Cabinet Secretary with regard to Verma.

Besides the plea filed by Verma, the court is also seized of the PIL filed by NGO Common Cause, which has sought a probe by special investigation team against CBI officers comprising Asthana, and had issued notices to the Centre, CBI, CVC, Asthana, Verma and Rao asking them to respond to it by November 12.

Asthana has also moved the Supreme Court with a separate petition in the issue and has sought removal of Verma from the post of CBI Director.

“We want to see preliminary probe report in 10 days to decide whether it needs the further probe,” the bench had said.

The feud amongVerma and Asthana escalated recently leading to registration of an FIR against the latter and others including Deputy Superintendent of Police Devender Kumar, who is in CBI custody in an alleged bribery case.

Both Asthana and Verma have been sent on leave.

 The CBI had on October 15 registered the FIR against Asthana for spoken receiving a bribe of Rs 2 crore from Hyderabad-based businessman Sana Sathish Babu which was given through two middlemen Manoj Prasad and Somesh Prasad to sabotage the probe against meat exporter Moin Qureshi.

 On August 24, Asthana, in his complaint to the Cabinet Secretary, had leveled allegations against Verma that he got a bribe of Rs two crore from Sana to help him get some relief from questioning in the matter.

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