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Oil-for-food scam: SC dismisses Natwar’s plea

Former External Affairs Minister K Natwar Singh is planning a book on the infamous oil-for-food scam, in which his alleged involvement led to his ouster from the government.
Hindustan Times | By HT Correspondent, Delhi
UPDATED ON OCT 06, 2010 01:03 AM IST

The Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected appeals by former foreign minister Natwar Singh and his son Jagat Singh requesting papers of the Volcker and R.S. Pathak committees in the Iraq’s oil-for-food scam.

A bench comprising justices B.Sudarshan Reddy and S.S. Nijjar held the petitions were delaying tactics. It added the petitions were an attempt to obstruct the proceedings in the case before the Enforcement Directorate.

The bench noted that Singh’s demand for supply of documents, in possession of the authority and such demand was based on vague, indefinite and irrelevant ground. The court further said, “No unreasonable request for adjournment shall be entertained by the adjudicating authority.”

Salem’s petition out

The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed gangster Abu Salem’s plea for cross examining a co-accused Riyaz Ahmed Siddique who turned hostile after turning an approver in builder Pradeep Jain murder case being tried under TADA.

The order paves way for early pronouncement of verdict in the 15-year-old murder case. A bench of justices P. Sathasivam and R.M. Lodha said since Siddique had turned hostile, he cannot be cross-examined by Salem and others.

On rackets in states

The Supreme Court has sought a response from chief secretaries of all States/UTs to explain steps taken for weeding out collusion between officials and vested interest in deliberately delaying filing of appeals against judgements.

A apex court bench said there appeared to be rackets involving government officials and beneficiaries of favourable verdicts and said it was high time the malpractice was rooted out.

(with PTI inputs)

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