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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

CBI opposes Ajay Garg's bail plea in railway scam

PTI  New Delhi, July 05, 2013
First Published: 18:47 IST(5/7/2013) | Last Updated: 08:07 IST(6/7/2013)

CBI on Friday opposed in a Delhi court the bail plea of an accused in the Rs. 10 crore cash-for-post railway bribery case, saying that he may try to influence witnesses whose identities have become public with the filing of the charge sheet.

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"We have filed the charge sheet in the case and names of the prosecution witnesses are mentioned in it. He (accused) knows their identities and can try to influence them after getting the relief," the CBI told the court while opposing bail plea of Ajay Garg, suspected to be a middleman in the deal.

Senior public prosecutor Akshay Gautam told the court that Garg was one of the main conspirators and was involved in the fixing of the bribe amount to be paid to former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal's nephew Vijay Singla, a key accused in the case.

Garg's counsel, however, countered the CBI's contentions saying the only evidence against his client is the intercepted telephonic conversations between the accused persons and apart from that, there are no witnesses against him and thus there is no question of him influencing anyone.

He said as the charge sheet has been filed, the CBI's probe into the case is over and Garg should be enlarged on bail.

Special CBI judge Swarana Kanta Sharma, however, said that she will go through the intercepted conversations to ascertain Garg's role and then will pass an order on July 8.

"Let me read the conversation(transcripts) and then I will pass the order. I will keep it for orders on Monday (July 8)," the judge said.

During the hearing on the bail plea, the lady judge was irked after going through a portion of the transcripts of the intercepted conversations saying there are a number of "abusive words" mentioned in the documents which the CBI should have "omitted" or "blurred" before giving a copy for her perusal.

"Abuses in the conversations (transcripts) should be blurred or omitted. Why do you (CBI) want to embarrass the court?" the judge said.

The court also told the agency that it would give written directions to it to remove these words from the copies of the transcripts supplied to it or the accused after getting no objection from the defence counsel.

These transcripts are part of the charge sheet filed by the CBI before the court on July 2 in which Bansal has been named as a prosecution witness.

Singla, Garg, the then Member (Staff) of Railway Board Mahesh Kumar and seven others have been chargesheeted for the offence of criminal conspiracy under the IPC and relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The court had yesterday taken cognisance of CBI's charge sheet in which the agency has alleged that Singla had demanded Rs. 10 crores from Kumar for his appointment to the post of Member (Electrical) and it was decided between the accused that Rs. five crore will be paid before the appointment and the rest will be paid after the job was done.

The first tranche of Rs. 89.68 lakhs was given to Singla who was apprehended in Chandigarh while accepting the money, it has said.


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