Cash-at-judge's door: CBI accuses law minister of subverting process | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Cash-at-judge's door: CBI accuses law minister of subverting process

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday accused the union law minister in 2009 of subverting the decision making process in cash-at-judge's door case.

chandigarh Updated: Sep 14, 2011 21:38 IST
Sanjeev Verma

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday accused the union law minister in 2009 of subverting the decision making process in cash-at-judge's door case.

The CBI in its arguments in the Punjab and Haryana high court said law minister in 2009 subverted the decision making process from within by withholding the matter pertaining to the prosecution sanction in case of justice (retd) Nirmal Yadav in cash-at-judge's door case, from the Prime Minister and the appointing authority i.e. President of India.

The prosecution in its arguments in the ongoing case submitted that the discussion between the union law minister and chief justice of India in 2009 cannot be construed as a "positive refusal" for grant of prosecution sanction in case of justice (retd) Nirmal Yadav, as pressed by the petitioner i.e. justice Yadav.

Appearing for the CBI, special public prosecutor, Anupam Gupta, emphasized that the matter should have gone up to the appointing authority i.e. President of India and it is the President who has to consult the Chief Justice of India (CJI) on such matter.

"In K Veraswamy's case, the apex court has emphasized that an order of the President is mandatory whether it is grant or refusal of prosecution sanction of a judge," asserted Gupta.

He further argued, "I am compelled to mention that the law minister acted unilaterally and his action is not only breach of constitution as expounded by the Supreme Court from 1958 to 2010 but also a breach of the principle of democratic responsibility and propriety."

The special public prosecutor quoted various judgments and rules of business of the apex court during his arguments before the bench headed by justice Permod Kohli.

The bench was informed that after the Punjab and Haryana high court bar association had strongly condemned the CJI for declining prosecution sanction in this case on February 9, last year, the secretary general of the Supreme Court on the very next day had issued clarification to the editors of national newspapers that the question of declining sanction did not arise because the matter was never put up before the CJI for consideration.

"I cannot believe that the clarification from secretary general can be wrong," said Gupta adding that if it is so then the letter dated December 7, 2009 of DR Meena, secretary of department of legal affairs cannot be believed. The letter mentions that in the context of reference made by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) for a fresh reference to the attorney general, the matter was discussed by minster for law and justice with the then chief justice of India, who had observed that "no action was required at present" and therefore no reference at that stage was made to attorney general.

The matter would again come up for hearing on Thursday.