After CBI raids, bugging checks at Himachal CM’s office

  • Gaurav Bisht, Hindustan Times, Shimla
  • Updated: Oct 08, 2015 12:12 IST
Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh. (HT Photo)

Over a week after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raids on Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh, the state police’s intelligence agency, the crime investigation department (CID), on Wednesday undertook a bug detection exercise at the CM’s office in Himachal Pradesh secretariat in Shimla.

The exercise was carried out by a special cell of the police’s anti-sabotage team that was assisted by information technology experts.

“Bugging checks were carried in all rooms of the chief minister’s offices and other offices concerned with him at the Ellerslie building,” an official of the CID, requesting anonymity, told Hindustan Times.

However, the official claimed, the bugging checks had nothing to do with the recent raids by the CBI at the CM’s residences, and were a routine affair.

The CID’s security wing, which is responsible for security of all VIP’s in the state, had earlier banned mobile phones inside the CM’s office in the building.

The CID plans to carry out similar checks at Barnes Court, the official residence of the Himachal Pradesh governor.

CID overhaul on cards

In the wake of the CBI raids on the CM catching the CID completely unawares, the state police are considering a major revamp of the intelligence agency.

The CBI had raided the CM’s private residence, Holly Lodge, about 8am on September 26 when he was about to leave for a marriage ceremony of his daughter at a local temple.

Sources said the CBI coming to the door of the CM with not even a single official of the CID having any inclination about the raids proved the complete failure of the state’s intelligence agency. Worse, the CBI vehicles bearing non-Himachal registration numbers managed to pass through restricted and sealed roads and by police barricades to reach the CM’s residence.

In a meeting held here on Wednesday, director general of police (DGP) Sanjay Kumar, who also heads the CID, reviewed the serious lapses by the intelligence apparatus.

“The chain of command and the methods of collecting intelligence will be reworked and lapses, if any, would also be dealt with strictly,” the DGP said.

CBI allowed to keep seized documents in Virbhadra’s DA case

New Delhi: The CBI was on Wednesday allowed to keep the results of their search and seizure raids conducted at the residences of Himachal-Pradeshchief minister Virbhadra Singh in disproportionate assets case.

Special CBI Judge SC Rajan also took on record the CBI’s compliance report of search warrants issued by the court. “Search warrants report be taken on record and documents required for further investigation are directed to be retained,” the judge said.

Senior public prosecutor SC Sharma moved an application seeking permission to retain the seized documents for further investigation. He said several documents were seized during the searches conducted by the agency and these documents were required by the CBI for further investigation in the case. On September 28, Singh had moved the court seeking directions to CBI to supply copy of FIR lodged against him and others in an alleged disproportionate assets case. However, he withdrew the plea two days later. The CBI had conducted searches at the official residence of Singh in Shimla and at 10 other places in connection with the case on September 26, the day his daughter was getting married. Searches were also carried out at his official residence in Delhi, his two houses in Shimla and Rampur and a farm house in South Delhi which is in the name of his son Vikramaditya Singh.

CBI had registered a Preliminary Enquiry, which was converted into a regular case, against Singh and his family members for amassing wealth of Rs 6.1 crore, alleging it was disproportionate to their known sources of income during 2009-11 when he was serving as Union minister of steel in the UPA government.

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