A special CBI court here on Thursday permitted senior BJP leader Raj Khurana, who is being tried on corruption charges, to fly to the US for a tour from August 3 to 20. Judge Vimal Kumar allowed Khurana's application and released his passport subject to condition that he would deposit Rs. 6 lakh
with the court.
At the last hearing on July 21, after the defence counsel sought time for arguments on framing of charges, former chief parliamentary secretary (CPS) Khurana had sought permission to go abroad with his family.
CBI had filed a chargesheet on April 21, indicting Khurana and two others - Davinder Singh Thapa, a junior assistant in the office of the registrar of firms and societies, Punjab; and Bhag Singh, private secretary at Punjab secretariat appointed as personal assistant of then minister Swarna Ram - for having hatched a conspiracy to get a complaint quashed against the executive members of the Punjab Automobile Mechanic Association.
They allegedly demanded and accepted illegal gratification of Rs. 1.5 crore from the complainant, who helped lay a trap after which the trio was arrested in May 2011.
The complaint was to be quashed by then industries minister Manoranjan Kalia, and hence Thapa had convinced the complainant that it was Khurana who could get it quashed by Kalia. In pursuance of the conspiracy, Bhag Singh got a note signed from Swarna Ram, then minister of technical education, social security, and woman and child welfare, who referred the complaint to Kalia for action.
Bhag Singh made available the copy of the note to Thapa to help him be in a position to ask for the bribe, the chargesheet alleged.
It was Thapa who accepted Rs. 1.5 crore at the official residence of Khurana on May 4, 2011, the night of the trap.