A special CBI court has issued non-bailable warrants against three persons in connection with the Rs 6.53-crore Provident Fund scam, in which some former judges have also been chargesheeted.
Special CBI Judge AK Singh issued the non-bailable warrants against Sarvan Kumar, Lokesh Kumar and Jaya Ashthana, sister of prime accused Ashutosh Ashthana who died in jail in October 2009.
The CBI had yesterday approached the court seeking issue of arrest warrants against six former judges, including three who retired from Allahabad High Court.
The six had moved applications expressing inability to appear in court citing old age and illhealth. District Judge R P Mishra, who recently retired, said in his application that he is suffering from Parkinson's disease and his wife was ailing, court sources said.
Former High Court Judge R P Yadav also expressed his inability to attend the hearing, citing advanced age, while his former colleaguee R N Mishra said he suffered from spondylitis and won't be able to travel to attend the hearing, they said. 63-year-old R S Choubey, a former district judge, cited old age as the reason.
The special judge dismissed their plea of the judges and asked them to appear on the next date of hearing on January 31. The court had summoned the judges in the case but none of them had appeared even though a charge sheet has been filed against them.
The CBI filed a chargesheet against 78 people, including three former judges of Allahabad High Court and three district judges in the case. The case took a new turn after the key accused Ashutosh Asthana, died under mysterious circumstances at the Dasna jail.
The scam was exposed after special CBI judge Rama Jain lodged a criminal case against 70 people at Kavi Nagar police station in February 15, 2008 following which Asthana was arrested.
The CBI claimed to have found that the PF money of class III and IV employees of Ghaziabad courts was illegally siphoned out and lavishly spent on furniture, crockery, mobiles, electronic gadgets and appliances, laptops, rail tickets, taxi fare and other luxury items for the judges.
Asthana as the treasury officer was tasked to safeguard the PF money of the employees The CBI claimed to have recovered four original certificates issued by Chief Judicial Magistrate, Ghaziabad, certifying that the truck numbers mentioned were carrying the articles of members of judiciary, which were given to the truck driver for smooth passage of goods while passing several states.