`No sanction to try govt servants could encourage corruption`
New Delhi: Using lack of sanction as a reason for not prosecuting government servants in a case where there is clear abuse of the official position by them will amount to "encouraging corruption", a Delhi court has said.
The court said this while dealing with a case involving two officials of Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) and a motor vehicles inspector, who allegedly caused a loss of Rs one crore to the government by aiding a hotel to use three imported vehicles for private purposes instead of commercial usage for which discount on customs duty was availed.
The case was remanded to a magisterial court by the special CBI court which said that "prima facie" charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy are made out against them but there was no sanction to prosecute them under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
"Posing a bar of sanction in cases where abuse of official position is clear by government servants will amount to encouraging corruption which no court can allow," Special CBI Judge Swarana Kanta Sharma said.
"No sanction is required for taking cognisance under section 420 IPC against any of the accused persons. I am of the opinion that by no stretch of the imagination the acts of the accused persons of entering into a criminal conspiracy for committing act of cheating as discussed in detail above can be constructed to be part of their official duties and therefore, sanction is not required," the judge added.
DGFT officials, Devender Kumar Bajaj and Sheela Ahuja and Ashok Kumar, a motor vehicles inspector, along with Delhi based Nehru Place Hotels Ltd, its Director Amit Rai Sood and Vice President (Finance) Yoginder Dhawan and a Chartered Engineer Rohit Kumar were charge sheeted by the CBI which had invoked charges of cheating and conspiracy against them.
The court remanded the matter to the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate saying that a prima facie case under section 120-B (conspiracy) read with section 420 (cheating) of the IPC is made out against all the accused.
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