The Supreme Court Monday directed lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan to disclose the identity of the ‘whistle-blower’ who gave him a copy of the guest register of CBI director Ranjit Sinha’s residence.
A bench headed by Justice HL Dattu asked Bhushan to submit the name — in a sealed envelope — directly before the court takes any decision on the application moved by the Centre for Public Interest and Litigation (CPIL), which has charged Sinha with compromising investigations in the case as he met senior executives of an accused company at his 2, Janpath residence here.
“We want to know how authentic the gentleman is as this (application) has a serious consequences on the proceedings,” the bench said, fixing September 22 for further hearing.
Video: SC asks Bhushan to reveal name of whistleblower in CBI chief case
Sinha’s counsel, senior advocate Vikas Singh, deprecated Bhushan for filing an application, containing “frivolous” and “baseless,” allegations in contravention to the SC rules and pointed fingers at a business house for the alleged leaks. He challenged the claim that Sinha had given an opinion to protect former Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran in the Aircel-Maxis deal.
“He says it’s a water-tight case. From where does he get it? There is nothing of this nature,” Singh said, accusing Bhushan of undermining the CBI director’s reputation.
CBI counsel senior advocate KK Venugopal wanted the court to direct Bhushan to name the person giving him information about the secret file notings, a request declined by the court.
Bhushan urged the court not to pass the direction seeking the whistle-blower’s name as it would expose him to harassment by his seniors. “I am willing to stake my life for the authenticity of the register. The entries are made in different hand-writings... There are not only names, but also car numbers and the entry and exit time. To ascertain whether my allegations against the director accusing him of interfering with the trial are correct, the same can be checked from the records,” Bhushan said.