The Supreme Court on Monday gave six months to investigation agencies to probe allegations that former Uttar Pradesh minister and BSP leader Naseemuddin Siddiqui and his spouse amassed disproportionate assets while holding public office.
A bench of Chief Justice TS Thakur and Justice AM Khanwilkar asked the agencies, CBI and Enforcement Directorate, to take the probe to the logical end in accordance with the law.
“Considering the fact that the law enforcement agencies are on their job for quite some time, we express a sanguine hope that they would complete the investigation/enquiry at the earliest and not later than six months from today and take the same to its logical end in accordance with law,” the bench said.
The verdict came on an appeal filed against the Allahabad High Court order refusing to allow a PIL seeking implementation of the recommendation of the state Lokayukta.
The Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta, in the recommendation, had ordered probe by CBI and ED after finding prima facie evidence against in the complaint filed by Jagdish Narain Shukla against Naseemuddin and his wife Husna Siddiqui.
As the recommendation was not complied, Shukla had approached the High Court which said “the opinion of the Lokayukta in the report cannot be construed to be final or conclusive as it was a fact finding enquiry and a detailed enquiry is yet to be made after affording opportunity of hearing to the person against whom complaint is made.”
The High Court had also said that there was no public interest involved in the petition.
The apex court, which did not expressed any opinion on the merits of the case, asked the agencies already probing the matter to take the investigation to its logical end.
“We make it clear that we are not expressing any opinion on the merits of the matters under investigation/enquiry or the defence that may be available to respondent nos. 5 and 6 (Siddiqui and his wife) in any proceedings to be instituted against them in relation to the said matters,” the bench said.
The Lokayukta in its report had concluded on the basis of prima facie evidences that Siddiquis, besides buying various properties, had purchased land worth over Rs 16 crore for a meagre price of Rs 46 lakh for their private society.
Apart from this, as per the report the couple had also purchased agriculture land worth Rs one crore located in Tindwari of district Banda for a meagre price of Rs 4.5 lakh.