Dasna jail authorities begin probe into Asthana`s death
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Last Updated: Tuesday, October 20, 2009, 18:27
Ghaziabad: Dasna jail authorities on Tuesday began an enquiry into the mysterious death of Ashutosh Asthana, the prime accused in the multi-crore PF scam allegedly involving some judges.

DIG (Jail) A K Panda visited the district jail here and recorded the statements of the inmates in the barrack in which Asthana was lodged under judicial custody, Jail Superintendent V K Singh said.

Meanwhile, the UP government's decision to conduct a judicial probe into Asthana's death has been referred to District Judge (Ghaziabad) V D Gupta to decide whether he or someone else will conduct the enquiry, District Magistrate R Ramesh Kumar said.

Asthana, a treasury officer at the Ghaziabad court, was named the prime accused in the Rs 23 crore scam in which the names of 36 judges of various courts, including one from the Supreme Court, had cropped up. He was found dead under mysterious circumstances in Dasna jail on Saturday.

The state government had yesterday ordered multi-level probes into the incident.

The District Magistrate said that since Asthana was in judicial custody, a magisterial enquiry is "not enough" and a judicial probe is "unavoidable".

SSP Akhil Kumar denied reports that a case has been lodged into the matter, saying it will be done only when it is established that Asthana's death was unnatural.

The issue also figured before the Supreme Court which directed that the judicial magistrate enquiring into the circumstances leading to Asthana's death shall submit his report to it within eight weeks.

Bureau Report

First Published: Tuesday, October 20, 2009, 18:27

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