Chandigarh: A special CBI Court here Tuesday allowed over two weeks time to former Punjab and Haryana High Court Judge Nirmal Yadav, an accused in cash-at-judge`s door scam, to move Supreme Court to challenge a recent HC order which had refused to stay the trial in the five-year-old case.
Nirmal Yadav and four other accused in the case were present in the CBI Court here today.
The framing of charges which was expected to be done today by the CBI court against all the accused have now been put off, with the case being adjourned by Special CBI Judge Vimal Kumar to December 12.
Justice Yadav`s counsel S K Garg Narwana moved an application before the CBI court on her behalf, mentioning that she has received the certified copy of High Court`s November 22 order only today and she proposes to challenge it before the Supreme Court.
Narwana requested for adjournment for three weeks, but senior advocate and CBI`s Special Public Prosecutor, Anupam Gupta strongly opposed it, saying it was yet another "delaying tactics" being adopted by the former Judge.
However, Justice Yadav`s counsel said, "There is no question of adopting any delay tactics. I pray for some more time. I have been appearing before the Court regularly. I am bound to appear, I am not running away and I am prepared to give an undertaking (to remain present on next hearing)."
The Special Judge after hearing the arguments allowed the application, in the "interest of justice, equity and good conscience", observing that it is a well-settled principle of law that justice must not only be done, but also must seem to be done.
The special CBI court had recently summoned Yadav and other accused in the case for framing of charges against them for today following which Justice Yadav had approached the High Court seeking stay on trial court`s order.
However, on Friday, the Punjab and Haryana High Court had refused to stay the cash-at-judge`s door trial while dismissing an application filed by its former Judge, Justice Yadav, who had sought a stay on the trial in the special CBI court at Chandigarh for framing of charges in the case.
The High Court had also turned down Yadav`s request to grant two weeks time to challenge the order in the Supreme Court and asked her to put the same request before the special CBI court.
On behalf of the CBI, Anupam Gupta strongly opposed the application, saying the HC order of November 22 is very comprehensive and strong rejection of the application for the stay and has relied upon two very important judgements of the Supreme Court including the latest judgement in the 2G scam.
Gupta submitted that "this is usual delay tactics adopted by the accused... Framing of charges is only consequential upon the Court`s order of July 31 and therefore, the charges must be framed today."
Later, briefly speaking to reporters outside the Court premises, Justice Yadav said she had full faith in the judiciary.
On July 31, the CBI court here had ordered the framing of charges against Justice Yadav for corruption while accepting in its entirety the charge sheet filed by the CBI against her and other co-accused on March 4, 2011.
The court had also ordered framing of charges against advocate Sanjeev Bansal, who had earlier served as Additional Advocate General, Haryana, Delhi-based hotelier Ravinder Singh, city-based businessmen Rajiv Gupta and Nirmal Singh under various Sections of the IPC including 120 B (criminal conspiracy).
The CBI held that justice Yadav had committed an offence punishable under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
The case had hit headlines after a packet containing Rs 15 lakh was allegedly wrongly delivered at residence of Nirmaljit Kaur, who was also High Court judge, in 2008.
The matter was reported to the Chandigarh Police, but the case was later handed over to the CBI.
The CBI on March 4, 2011 had charge-sheeted Justice Nirmal Yadav, who was then a judge in the Uttarakhand High Court, in the cash-at-judge`s-door case on the day of her retirement.
She had been transferred from the Punjab and Haryana High Court in November 2009.