While noting that the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) report on Central Bureau of Investigation Director Alok Verma is “very complimentary, not so complimentary and very uncomplimentary”, the Supreme Court on Friday directed that the CVC report should be given to Verma in a sealed cover to file a response on November 20, the next date of hearing.
However, the Supreme Court refused to give the CVC inquiry report to CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana, who too has approached the top court against government’s decision to send him on leave in October. “No chance,” the Supreme Court judges said when Asthana’s counsel Mukul Rohtangi sought the CVC report on Verma.
But the Court directed that Attorney General K.K. Venugopal, appearing for the Centre, and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CVC can be given copies of the report.
The bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice K.M. Joseph said that the report is ‘very complimentary, not so complimentary and very uncomplimentary towards CBI Director Alok Verma.’ They added that Verma can file his response and the court can thereafter take a decision. The court also said that this course of action has been taken keeping in mind confidentiality and sanctity of the institution CBI.
Responding to this, Verma’s counsel Fali Nariman told the court that they will file a response to this by next date. “He (Verma) will be ready with the response on CVC’s report by Monday (November 19) and file it in the court very next day.”
The CVC had submitted its investigation report in a sealed cover to the Supreme Court on Monday. The investigation was conducted under the supervision of Justice (retired) AK Patnaik. However, the CVC in its report said “that some charges need further probe”.
The Supreme Court also said on Friday that it will take a decision later on CBI’s Deputy Superintendent of Police AK Bassi’s application challenging his transfer to Port Blair. Bassi, who was the Investigation Officer in the Alok Verma-Rakesh Asthana bribery allegations case, had moved the court following his transfer orders on October 24.
On the same date, Verma too had moved the Apex Court challenging an October 23 order by the Central government in which he was divested of his charge following differences with Special Director Rakesh Asthana. Gopal Sankaranarayanan, the lawyer appearing for Verma, had told the Apex Court that the Centre has asked his client to go on leave, hence, compromising the investigation of various sensitive cases.