A Delhi court on Wednesday expressed its displeasure with the inquiry conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation into allegations of bribery against its own officials, reported PTI. This came a day after the CBI cleared its former special director Rakesh Asthana and Deputy Superintendent of Police Devender Kumar in the case.
The CBI filed a chargesheet in the case on Tuesday, in which it dropped Asthana and Kumar’s names. The chargesheet was filed before Special CBI Judge Sanjeev Kumar.
The court said it will take up the chargesheet on February 19. “Why certain accused, who seem to have a bigger role in the case, were roaming free while the CBI arrested its own DSP?” asked Special CBI Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal.
Asthana and Devendra Kumar, along with middleman Manoj Prasad, were under the CBI lens for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs 2 crore in exchange for clearing Hyderabad-based businessman Sathish Babu Sana, who was being investigated in the Moin Qureshi corruption case. Qureshi is accused in multiple graft cases.
However, the CBI chargesheet named Prasad as an accused and said that the investigation against his brother Somesh Prasad and a person named Sunil Mittal was still under way. Research and Analysis Wing chief Samant Goel, whose name had come up in connection with the Prasad brothers, has also been dropped.
Asthana was accused of receiving kickbacks and extorting money from businessman Sana. Asthana, in turn, accused former CBI Director Alok Verma of trying to falsely implicate him, and levelled corruption charges against him. The Centre subsequently sent both Asthana and Verma on compulsory leave in October 2018.
In January, the Delhi High Court had pulled up the CBI in January and set a four-week deadline for the chargesheet. The High Court had given two extensions last year – in May and October – but told the investigators that it would not give them any more time.