A division bench of the Punjab and Haryana high court on Monday adjourned hearing in the Rs 6,000-crore Bhola drug racket case for April 6.
The case was listed for hearing before the division bench of justice AK Mittal and justice Rekha Mittal. As the hearing started in the afternoon, assistant solicitor general of India (ASG) Chetan Mittal, appearing on behalf of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), filed the reply listing replacements for key ED officer Niranjan Singh, who has been transferred to Kolkata.
Mittal argued that the stay on the transfer be vacated as the replacements, as asked for by the court, had been named in the reply. The services of Niranjan Singh were required in Kolkata, where a case being monitored by the Supreme Court is to be investigated by him (Niranjan), Mittal submitted.
However, the division bench verbally told the counsels that they were yet to go through the details of the case and needed some time to study it. Later, the HC bench adjourned the case for March 6.
The matter was not listed before the bench in the morning and was transferred to it during the day after another bench headed by justice Hemant Gupta recused from hearing the case on March 26.
Two officers -- Rajiv Kumar from the ED’s Srinagar office and Ajay Singh from the Delhi headquarters -- had been named by the ED as replacements. The HC had stayed the transfer of Niranjan Singh following an application from a lawyers’ group challenging the ED’s decision to move him to the Kolkata office in January.