New Delhi: Himachal Pradesh Chief MinisterVirbhadra Singh, an accused in a disproportionate assets case along with others, on Thursday claimed in Delhi High Court that the way in which the probe was conducted showed an ‘element of enthusiasm’ on CBI’s part indicating an element of ‘malafide’.
Questioning CBI’s jurisdiction in registering the case here, his counsel told Justice Vipin Sanghi that the court should look into the ‘ramifications’ of the matter as the agency could keep doing its probe which might finish the political career of the Congress leader.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Singh, said as per CBI’s case, all assets alleged to be disproportionate to the known source of income were in Himachal Pradesh and the agency should not have lodged the case in Delhi, on the basis of the fact that his client was then a union minister here.”The manner in which probe was conducted (by CBI) shows an element of enthusiasm which would not have been there in normal circumstances ,” Sibal told the court.
Sibal said CBI had conducted first preliminary enquiry (PE) and thereafter sought to close the case, but later it carried out a second PE on the same set of facts which were dealt with earlier.
He argued that the check period in a DA case “cannot give CBI the jurisdiction to lodge a case here” as jurisdiction would be made out at the place where the offence is alleged to have been committed.”There must be a court crafted roadmap in such matters..What will give you (CBI) jurisdiction is the place where an offence is committed,” Sibal said during the arguments which would continue on September 23.
The CBI had earlier told the high court that its probe in the DA case against Singh and others was ‘complete’ and it wanted to file the chargesheet in the matter.
During the hearing on Thursday, Sibal also asked how CBI could register a PE without taking any consent of the state. “This means the CBI will start conducting a PE without anybody’s consent. They should have reported the information received by them to the concerned authority in the state,” he said.
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