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CBI can register cases arising out of Radia tapes on SC order

CBI told the Supreme Court that it can register cases on its directions on certain issues as the records of Niira Radia tapes suggest criminality.



New Delhi: CBI on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that it can register cases on its directions on certain issues as the records and the analysis of taped conversations of former corporate lobbyist Niira Radia with top corporate honchos, politicians and others, suggest criminality.

Senior advocate K K Venugopal, who was reading out the excerpts of ten items emanating from the report of the apex court-appointed six member team, said there is "prima facie" suspicion in some of the aspects requiring registration of preliminary inquiries by the CBI.

"If you direct CBI to investigate then we have to register preliminary inquiry," Venugopal, appearing for the agency, said.

He agreed with the suggestions of a bench headed by Justice G S Singhvi that since the case was being monitored by the apex court, CBI can be asked to investigate the serious issues arising in the matter and nothing should be left to the state police.

The bench also asked the Centre to apprise it as to whether the officials, listening to the conversations of Radia with top corporate honchos and others, informed their seniors about the "serious issues" emanating from the tapped telephonic records.

"The question is whether the serious issues which came to light was brought to the notice of senior officials or not. The next question is as to what action was taken?," the bench said.

The court also expressed surprise over inaction of Income Tax department officials and others on alleged incriminating contents of the taped conversations.

"What has surprised us that these conversations were available to the senior officials," it said, adding that the "the delay has made the matter almost infructuous."

"Had it been shared with the higher authorities the consequences could have been different as these are serious matters," the bench said.

PTI

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