Sukna scam: Rath`s petition rejected

The Army Court trying Lt Gen PK Rath in the Sukna land scam rejected his petition to examine private realtor Dilip Agarwal.

Last Updated: Jan 19, 2011, 18:06 PM IST

Shillong: The Army Court trying Lt Gen P
K Rath in the Sukna land scam on Wednesday rejected his petition to
examine private realtor Dilip Agarwal, saying the defence was
given ample opportunity to put questions to the dealer when he
was a court witness.

Presiding officer I J Singh, however, took on record
the letter purportedly written by Agarwal to the court
claiming that Rath was innocent.

"The court has examined the letter. All issues stated
in the letter were brought out when he (Agarwal) was a court
witness. No additional clarification is needed," Singh ruled.

He said the court had given full opportunity to the
defence to put questions to Agarwal but they declined to avail
the opportunity at that time.

Rath had petitioned the court seeking to recall
Agarwal and examine him to clarify "certain missing links that
may have a direct bearing on the case".

Rath`s petition came after Agarwal wrote a letter to
the General Court Martial (GCM) blaming Lt Gen Ramesh Halgali
for issuing No Objection Certificates for construction on a
piece of land adjacent to the military station.

Rath, former 33 Corps Commander, contended that in his
previous appearance as a court witness, "Agarwal was not
allowed to give any statement nor he was given any chance to
produce any document that he claims to have possessed. So he
might have resorted to write this letter to the GCM."

However, the GCM had refused to take cognisance of the
letter after receiving it last week.

Responding to Rath`s plea, the Army opposed it saying
that there was no such precedence of accepting last minute
petitions during GCMs, sources said.

Meanwhile, the judge advocate of the court is likely
to commence his summing up this evening.

PTI