New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday extended an interim stay on a trial court order directing CBI's Director to place before it an action taken report against an "erring official" who did not follow law in conducting searches in a graft case.
Justice Manmohan Singh extended the stay till March 23 after the agency's counsel Sonia Mathur contended that the special judge's order in the matter will harm the ongoing investigation.
She further said that the trial court judge's order passed on October 28, 2014 and November 10, 2014 be quashed.
To which, the court asked the CBI's counsel to provide him a copy of the order passed by the trial court.
It also directed the agency to give their submissions in written within two weeks.
"Put it for March 18 for further consideration. Interim order (stay) to continue," the court said.
CBI has approached the high court after the trial court had directed the agency's the then Director Ranjit Sinha to file a report by November 12, 2014 after he and CBI's other top officers did not to comply with a October 28, 2014 direction to furnish written explanations and file an action taken report against the agency's erring officials.
It had also directed CBI's concerned Superintendent of Police (SP) and Deputy Inspector General (DIG) to file their written submission, if any, on or before November 12, 2014 as to "why the matter be not proceeded against them for non- compliance of directions" issued by the court in October last year and also their "willful disobedience."
The court had on November 10 last year said that no appeal/revision of its October 28, 2014 order in this matter was filed in superior court nor any stay obtained.
The trial court's order had come on a case of alleged graft in which CBI had in October filed an FIR against unnamed officials of Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and a private firm for alleged irregularities in supplying high-altitude tents to a covert unit of the external intelligence agency.
According to CBI, an FIR in the case has been lodged
against Sai Baba Builders and Consultants and its three directors Shyam Sunder Bhatter, J P N Singh and Manjari who is the wife of businessman S P Singh.
The case has been registered under IPC related to cheating, forgery and others and under Prevention of Corruption Act.
It is related to alleged corruption in the supply of high altitude tents worth Rs 22 crore required by Special Frontier Force (SFF), a covert unit of RAW, operating during 2009-13.
The lower court had noted in its order that earlier it said it had found flagrant violations of Section 100 of CrPC by concerned CBI officers after which clear directions were issued in its October 21, 2014 order and a detailed order was passed on October 28, 2014 but no such explanation has been received from the CBI Director, the SP and the DIG.
They were asked to give explanation and ATR in 10 days.
Section 100 of the CrPC deals with the procedures to be followed by a police official while conducting search of a closed place.
The trial court had also observed that supplementary case diaries filed by the investigating officer simply mentioned that the search team had made efforts to take witnesses from the locality for witnessing search during the probe but it did not yield any result.
CBI has lodged the FIR in the case after it had received a reference from the Prime Minister's Office which wanted a probe in the matter. RAW had carried out an internal probe in the matter in which prima facie irregularities were found.
The report was sent to the PMO which referred it to CBI for further probe. SFF was set up after the 1962 India-China war to carry out specialised operations for RAW.