In a reprieve to the Nitish Kumar government, the Patna High Court on Friday reserved its ruling on modifying its July 15 order for a tentative CBI probe into alleged financial irregularities to the tune of Rs 11,412 crore.
“Whether or not the allegations levelled in the writ petitions are fit to be referred for investigation by CBI, shall remain in abeyance until further order of the court,” the court said.
While reserving the verdict on the state modification petition, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Rekha M. Doshit and Justice S.K. Katriar said the operation of the order asking the CBI director and joint director to be present before it on July 26 shall remain stayed till further order.
Hearing the PIL filed by Arvind Kumar Sharma and others, urging a CBI probe into the alleged financial mismanagement as pointed out in the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), the court had observed on July 15 that “it must be investigated by CBI. It calls for investigation by an independent agency beyond the reach of state government otherwise it will be a complete failure”.
Explaining the stand of the state government on its modification petition, senior Supreme Court advocate L. Nageshwar Rao had pleaded that the CAG report was not final as it had “yet to be adopted by the house.”
Rao had said “it is not permissible under law for any other inquiry or investigation (to be conducted) when the PAC (public accounts committee) is conducting an inquiry on the CAG report”.
Opposing the state modification plea, however, the petitioner’s counsels said if the state wished it should appeal before the Supreme Court against the division bench order of the high court.