Judeo probe will be fair: PM
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Judeo probe will be fair: PM

Vajpayee told Lok Sabha that there should be 'no fear or misgiving' over the independence of the CBI inquiry into the Judeo case.

india Updated: Dec 11, 2003 00:39 IST

Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Wednesday told the Lok Sabha that the CBI inquiry into the cash-on-tape sting would be impartial.

"There should be no fear or misgivings on the independence of the investigation into the case," he said ahead of a discussion on the case. ''Truth will soon be out and the law will take its own course."

In the Rajya Sabha, members did not seek clarifications on being told that a debate would follow in the Lok Sabha after Vajpayee's statement. The Upper House will debate the issue on Thursday.

During the debate in the Lok Sabha, the Opposition sought a JPC probe as it expressed serious doubts about the impartiality of the CBI. The PM's reply to the debate has been slated for Thursday.

Briefly presenting the facts of the case, the Prime Minister said the CBI had sent notices to Judeo, the former minister of state for environment and forests, and his assistant private secretary Natwar Rateria.

"The CBI is inquiring into this whole matter and it would be premature to state anything till the inquiry is complete," Vajpayee said.

"The CBI has full functional autonomy and, under the recently enacted Central Vigilance Commission Act, the superintendence of the CBI in relation to offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act has been vested by the government in the CVC," he said

Soon after the PM’s statement, several BJP members wanted to know about the Ajit Jogi audio tape episode.

Initiating the Lok Sabha debate, Ramji Lal Suman (Samajwadi Party) charged the government with "eroding" the CBI's credibility. He said "nothing was said about why Judeo resigned and on what grounds his resignation was accepted".

To counter Suman's charges, BJP member Anadi Charan Sahu raised the Jogi issue, calling the former CM a "megalomaniac". Defending Judeo, Sahu said: "He did not have the authority as a Minister of State to give mining rights to private parties."

First Published: Dec 10, 2003 12:57 IST