PM wants law officers to be truthful in court: SG



New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has made it clear to top law officers that they should be "truthful" before the Supreme Court in the coalgate matter and maintained that the government had not interfered with the CBI probe.

"We must absolutely be truthful to the court and that we should place all the facts before the court as far as government is concerned," Singh had told the law officers a day before the matter came up before the apex court on April 30.

Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran told PTI that the Prime Minister had said "we respect the autonomy of the CBI and we have not interfered with the probe".

Parasaran said that the Prime Minister was not aware of the controversial meeting between Law Minister Ashwani Kumar, Attorney General G E Vahanvati and the then Additional Solicitor General Harin Raval, in which the draft report of the CBI probe was shared with the political executive.

The SG said he was not aware as to who had called the meeting involving AG, Law Minister and ASG. "AG and Law Minister are the best persons to clarify on the issue," he said.

When asked whether the Prime Minister was disturbed over the entire episode, Parasaran said, "He is not disturbed, but concerned with the development as for him government's credibility must not be affected."

Parasaran quoted the Prime Minister as saying "We must gain public confidence and everything has to be done properly, was his concern."

He also said that the PM was of the view that "we have to defend the government on the merits of the case".

"The government is waiting for the CBI affidavit and it will decide its action after the contents become open from the sealed cover," he added.

Parasaran said the sharing of the draft report should not have happened and this has to be kept in mind for the future.

He said the Law Minister had wanted to solve procedural issues as there was a difference between law officers whether the report should be given in sealed cover or openly along with the affidavit.

PTI