Verdict in Tehelka sting case on April 27

A Delhi court reserved its judgement for April 27 in a fictitious defence deal case in which former BJP President Bangaru Laxman is accused.

New Delhi: A Delhi court has reserved its
judgement for April 27 in an 11-year-old fictitious defence
deal case in which former BJP President Bangaru Laxman is
accused of accepting money from fake arms dealers.

Additional Sessions Judge Kanwal Jeet Arora reserved the
judgement in the corruption case in which Laxman was facing
trial for allegedly accepting money from fake arms dealers to
recommend to the Defence Ministry to award them a contract to
supply their wares for the Army.

The court reserved its order after hearing arguments from
the counsel for the CBI and the accused.

"Considering the multifaceted arguments advanced and the
bulky record of the case, which is required to be considered,
the judgement cannot be prepared within 15 days. Therefore,
let the matter be listed for judgement on April 27, 2012," the
judge said.
Laxman is facing trial under various provisions of the
Prevention of Corruption Act.

According to the CBI, Bangaru was caught on camera
accepting money in a 2001 sting operation conducted by
newsportal with its scribes posing as
representatives of a fictitious UK-based company West End
International and seeking his recommendation to the ministry
for supply of hand-held thermal imagers for the Indian Army.

The video CDs, which were released by the portal on March
13, 2001, had sparked a political storm following which Laxman
had resigned as BJP chief.
As per the CBI charge sheet, Tehelka scribes, under the
guise of representatives of West End International, had held
eight meetings with Laxman between December 23, 2000, and
January 7, 2001, projecting themselves as supplier of defence-
related products.

The CBI had alleged that Laxman had accepted Rs one lakh
from the representatives of the purported firm on January 1,
2001, at his office for pursuing their proposal to supply
certain products to the Army.

Laxman`s former personal secretary T Satyamurthy, who
was a co-accused, was granted pardon by a trial court after he
turned an approver in the case.

The court had earlier rejected the submissions of
Laxman`s counsel that no offence was disclosed because the
entire operation was based on a fictitious company.
It had also dismissed Laxman`s contention that the
functionaries of West End International were guilty and they
should also be prosecuted.

The court had said that the functionaries were whistle-
blowers and if such persons were also prosecuted, no one will
come forward to expose corruption.