SC gives CBI three weeks’ time to complete Vyapam cases takeover

New Delhi, Aug 24 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Monday gave the Central Bureau of Investigation three weeks’ time to take over all the cases relating to Vyapam scam and complete the appointment of public prosecutors to lead prosecution of its cases before the trial court.

A bench of Chief Justice H.L.Dattu, Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Amitava Roy gave the time as CBI told the court that of the 104 cases it has taken over, it has completed taking over all the documents in respect of 79, and needed another three weeks’ time to acquire documents in the remaining 25 cases. AA

The Supreme Court on July 9 had handed over to the CBI the investigation into the criminal cases related to the Vyapam admission cum recruitment scam and over 40 deaths linked to it.

The court also directed that Madhya Pradesh government would continue with the prosecution of 78 cases wherein charge sheets have been filed and trial was going on following the framing of the charges.

The order came as CBI told the court that till the time it takes over the prosecution of these cases, the state government may continue with its existing role as prosecuting agency so that these cases may not go by default.

As the CBI was told to take over all the Vyapam related cases, Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar urged the court to define what the Vyapam cases were so that they could have some clarity on the scope of the investigations.

Noting the agency has to understand the 78 cases in which trial is going on before taking them over, he urged the court to stay the trial in these cases.

“Stay the trial in 78 cases. Otherwise State will not go (attend them in the court) and we can’t go (before understanding the cases) and cases will go by default,” said Ranjit Kumar.

Making the position clear, the court said that the CBI would also look into the cases “where judgment has been delivered. You will look into them and decide” on the future course of action and “where trial is going on, your prosecutors will take over”.

Directing the next hearing of the matter on September 11, the court asked Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi to write to all the states to make available to the CBI their share of police officers that serve the investigating agency on deputation.

The court was told that CBI has “very very limited” officers that forms the investigating agency’s cadre and was short of 754 officers. It was also told that CBI needed officers who were real investigators.

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