Delhi HC stays Lokpal proceedings against Shibu Soren in DA case
The Delhi high court said the matter required consideration and stayed the proceedings till the next hearing on December 14
The Delhi high court on Monday stayed the proceedings against Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Rajya Sabha MP Shibu Soren before the Lokpal in connection to a disproportionate assets (DA) case.
Justice Yashwant Varma issued notice to the Lokpal and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member of Parliament (MP) Nishikant Dubey, who is the petitioner in the case. The court has posted the matter for hearing on December 14.
The judge said that the matter required consideration and stayed the proceedings till the next date of hearing.
The JMM supremo and the former Jharkhand chief minister has challenged the proceedings and order of the Lokayukta directing preliminary inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on the grounds of jurisdiction.
On August 4, 2022, the Lokpal directed to initiate proceedings for determining whether a prima facie case exists to proceed against him.
The plea argued that this order was passed without considering Soren’s objection that no inquiry can be conducted against him because the complaint was filed more than seven years after the alleged incident and Section 53 of the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act 2013 debars such investigation after expiry of the limitation period.
The plea further said that proceedings before the Lokpal were registered pursuant to a complaint dated August 5, 2020 and although CBI commenced a preliminary inquiry sometime in July 2021 against Soren, his wife and their children, no copy of the complaint was provided to the petitioner till the end of February 2022, the petition said.
Soren also challenged the Lokpal’s order of September 2020 through which it directed CBI to conduct a preliminary inquiry against Soren and submit a report.
The allegations against Soren are that he has over a period of more than 10 years amassed huge wealth, properties and assets by adopting unscrupulous and corrupt means in the state of Jharkhand.
The assets, it is alleged, is not only in his own name but even in the names of his family members including sons, daughters, daughter-in-law, friends and various companies in various districts of Jharkhand, such as Ranchi, Dhanbad and Dumka etc.