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SC orders SIT against CBI ex-Director Ranjit Sinha

| | new delhi
SC orders SIT against CBI  ex-Director Ranjit Sinha

Former CBI Director Ranjit Sinha entered the hall of shame on Monday becoming the first head of the Central investigating agency to face a probe for abusing his authority to benefit certain accused in the coal scam. Sinha will be probed by the same men he once commanded not so long ago.

The Supreme Court on Monday directed the present CBI Director to set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) comprising him and two other CBI officers to examine as to what extent Ranjit abused his position to “scuttle” investigation and prosecution in the coal scam. The CBI Director has to submit the composition of SIT and the time-frame for investigation to the court on January 30. The said SIT shall take the Central Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) into confidence on every step of its probe.

The Bench of Justices Madan B Lokur, Kurian Joseph and AK Sikri by a short order said, “A prima facie case has definitely been made out for investigation into the abuse of authority by Ranjit Sinha in terms of the report.”

The conclusion was based on a report submitted by former CBI Special Director ML Sharma, appointed by the SC to verify the entry register and establish whether a prima facie case is made out to probe whether Ranjit “scuttled” investigation and prosecution of the accused who visited his house.

The SC asked the SIT to look into Sharma’s report and other relevant documents to probe into the “abuse of authority prima facie committed by Sinha”. The court further asked senior advocate RS Cheema to assist the SIT on legal issues. Cheema is also the Special Public Prosecutor leading the CBI in the coal scam cases before the trial court.

This is not the first time Sinha has faced humiliation over his controversial “entry diary” which has records of several tainted persons frequently visiting his residence despite facing a CBI probe in the coal scam and the 2G scam. A copy of the “entry” register was produced before the court by advocate Prashant Bhushan, who petitioned the SC to monitor the coal scam probe.

On May 14, 2015, the SC ordered probe into Sinha’s misdeeds in the coal scam. It had then said, “The fact that Mr Sinha met some of the accused without the investigating officer or the investigating team being present disturbs us with regard to the fairness of the investigations. This is all the more so if we keep in mind the fact that in the 2G scam investigations, this court had concluded in its order dated November 20, 2011 that Mr Ranjit Sinha should not interfere in the investigation and prosecution of the case relating to the 2G spectrum allocation.”

Sinha did not deny that he met the accused. Instead, he argued that his job required him to “meet the accused and to get their point of view before taking a final decision in the matter of their criminality.” 

 
 
 

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