Even as the Supreme Court made it emphatically clear to the CBI and ED that the trial in the 2G scam case, to commence soon against former telecom minister A. Raja and others, has to be a speedy affair with daily hearings, differences between the government and CBI on the appointment of senior advocate Udai Lalit as special public prosecutor deepened further.
Strangely, the ED, probing the case in close coordination with the CBI, joined the government in opposing the CBI’s proposal as ED counsel and additional solicitor-general Haren Rawal said it was entirely the “prerogative” of the government to appoint a public prosecutor for any case.
At one stage, a bench of Justices G.S. Singhvi and A.K. Ganguly had indicated that they would issue a direction to the government to consider Mr Lalit, but when Mr Rawal cited the SC ruling on appointment of a prosecutor in Lalu Prasad’s case, stating that the issue was entirely for the government to decide, the bench refrained from passing any order and gave time to the Centre to take a decision.
While stating that it would pass a formal order on April 11, the bench said the main concern of the court was a speedy trial and that Mr Lalit was a lawyer of “impeccable integrity and considerable experience” in dealing with criminal cases.
“We will pass an order on April 11 that the special court will have hearing on day-to-day basis and no adjournment will be given. No other court in the country will pass any order in the (2G) case. If any petitioner has to raise any issue, any application regarding it will have to be filed only in this court (SC),” the bench said in an oral comment, giving ample indication that it would like to put the trial in one of the biggest scams of the country on a fast track. In response to the top court’s query about a second or supplementary chargesheet, CBI special counsel K.K. Venugopal said a “probe into the bribery aspect is underway and the chargesheet will be ready soon”.
According to sources in the CBI, the second chargesheet is likely to be filed by April 25. Asian Age