Even 26 years after the Bhopal gas leak killed over 15,000 people, the CBI refuses to reveal the details of its correspondence with External Affairs Ministry on the extradition of main accused Warren Anderson saying disclosure would impede the process of bringing him back.
A former Joint Director of the agency who led the probe into the disaster between 1994-95 had claimed that MEA had asked the CBI not to follow Anderson's extradition.
CBI had moved for the extradition of Anderson after he was declared absconder in 1993.
In an RTI reply to Abhishek Shukla the agency now says that the correspondence between MEA and CBI which took place 15 years ago could not be revealed as it would "impede the process of extradition and prosecution" of Anderson.
CBI's DIG Rakesh Aggarwal said, "As the trial of one of the accused Mr Warren Anderson in this case is still pending, disclosure of the information would impede the process of his extradition and prosecution. Hence the information is denied."
It, however, did not give any reason as to how withholding of details will impede Anderson's prosecution and extradition. The Central Information Commission had repeatedly directed that reasons be cited when seeking exemption from disclosure of information.
The applicant had demanded from the agency copies of all the correspondence exchanged between the CBI and Ministry of External Affairs during the probe of Bhopal gas leak case.
He also sought to know if MEA sent any letters regarding the extradition of Warren Anderson along with all the file notings in this regard.
The investigating agency came under fire after a trial court in Bhopal sentenced the seven accused under Section 304A, to a mere two years of imprisonment.
There was no word about Anderson in the judgement of the Bhopal court.