Gas pricing: HC asks Centre,RIL to co-operate with ACB in probe

The court also directed the Petroleum Ministry and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) to cooperate in the probe.

PTI| Last Updated: May 20, 2014, 17:14 PM IST

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the Centre and Reliance Industries Ltd to co-operate in the probe conducted by Delhi Government's Anti Corruption Bureau in an FIR lodged against the company, Mukesh Ambani and a former union oil minister, alleging collusion among them in increasing gas prices.

Justice Manmohan issued notice to the Delhi government and the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB), which is probing the allegations in the FIR, and sought their reply by August 1.

The court also directed the Petroleum Ministry and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) to cooperate in the probe.

The court issued the notices on a plea by Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) seeking quashing of the FIR lodged against it, Mukesh Ambani and former Petroleum Minister M Veerappa Moily by the then AAP Government led by Arvind Kejriwal.

The court also issued notice to the Centre and RIL on an impleadment application moved through advocate Prashant Bhushan by the complainants in the FIR and posted it for August 1.

It said that in the meantime the interim order of not taking any coercive action against the persons mentioned in the FIR will continue to operate.

The court also asked for the file of Delhi government which had forwarded the complaint received against RIL and the Centre to the ACB and had allegedly directed it to lodge an FIR and probe the issue.

The Delhi government submitted before the court that no such direction was issued by the then Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and gave an assurance that the relevant file would be placed before it on the next date of hearing.

Meanwhile, Justice Manmohan took strong objection to Delhi government's submission that both the petitions, which are criminal writs, were listed in his court and that some kind of fixing is allegedly going on.

"I take strong objection to the submission that writ petitions were listed here. Matters are listed here by the Registry, not by judges. You are playing to the gallery. Please understand, election campaign is over. I will not tolerate it.

"I take strong umbrage. What nonsense is this. I can summon the LG for putting this (submission) on affidavit. The majesty of the court has to be upheld. You can say Government of India is fixing matters," the judge said.