SC slams CBI for slow probe on UP CM`s assets case

SC on Mon slammed CBI for dragging its feet in the disproportionate assets case involving Mayawati & wondered whether the probe agency & BSP boss are "together".

Last Updated: Sep 27, 2010, 20:07 PM IST

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday slammed CBI for dragging its feet in the disproportionate assets case involving Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati and wondered whether the probe agency and the BSP boss are "together".

A bench of Justices B Sudershan Reddy and S S Nijjar bluntly told the counsel for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) that if the agency was not keen on pursuing the case, then the "petition must go".
"What is this? Every time, you seek time or an adjournment. Sometimes, you seek time for filing reply, then you say that you want to file a counter-affidavit then you say that you want to file an affidavit."

"If both of you are together then let this petition go," the bench remarked when the CBI counsel sought an adjournment of the matter on the plea of filing a reply in the case. Opposition parties have before alleged that the CBI was willing to let Mayawati off the hook in exchange for her support to the Central government during a crucial vote in
Parliament earlier this year.

Earlier, the CBI had said that the prosecution of Mayawati in the disproportionate assets case cannot be dropped as it has found cogent, credible and admissible evidence against her.
The probe agency, in an affidavit filed in response to Mayawati`s contention that the proceedings against her be dropped in the wake of the Commissioner Income Tax (CIT
appeal) order of April 5 and 19, 2010 giving her a clean chit, said that the order has been challenged before the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT).

The CBI had also submitted that it will consider a representation made by Mayawati for closure of proceedings against her in the corruption case in view of the favourable orders passed by the income tax authorities.

The chief minister, in her affidavit, had alleged that the CBI was proceeding in a discriminatory and hostile manner against her in the DA case by adopting different yardsticks vis-a-vis cases those involving Mulayam Singh Yadav and Lalu Prasad.

She had contended the case registered against her by the CBI six years ago has been "completely demolished" by the two orders of the Income Tax Department passed on April 5 and 19 in her favour. The I-T orders relate to the assessment years 2001-02 and 2002-03.
The investigating agency had said there was evidence to prove that the BSP chief and her family members acquired assets far exceeding their legal sources of income. The agency had pointed out that her declared assets of Rs one crore in 2003 went up to Rs 50 crore in 2007 and said there was "ample evidence" to show she had amassed wealth disproportionate to her known sources of income.

Mayawati had claimed she had received the money through donations from party workers, which included meager sums of Rs five and Rs ten which they contributed on her birthday.

The UP CM had filed a petition in May, 2008, seeking quashing of the criminal proceedings against her in the case alleging it was registered due to "political reasons".

PTI