Virbhadra Singh Gets A Week’s Breather In Audio CD Case

Shimla: With the Himachal High Court declining to either pass an interim order or issue notices in the union minister Virbhadra Singh’s plea for transfer of investigations in the contentious CD case to CBI under Article 226, the union minister has got a breather till next Friday when the matter comes up again before the court for the state assured the court that a challan in the CD case before the trial court would not be filed till then.

The case was heard by the double bench of Chief Justice Joseph Kurian and Justice Deepak Gupta in the afternoon, after the double bench of Justice RB Mishra and Justice VK Sharma, before who the matter was listed for in the morning, rescued themselves from hearing the matter.

While RS Cheema, counsel for Virbhadra Singh, pressed for an interim order and issuing of notices to the state, the chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and DGP Daljit Manhas, who have been named as respondents in the matter, Satypal Jain, the counsel engaged by the government opposed it saying the matter already stood disposed off under Article 482.

After hearing both the parties for over 3 hours, the double bench left the matter open till 24th September at the inconclusive hearing today.

Earlier, the matter was listed before Justice Rajeev Sharma on Thursday, who too had rescued himself from hearing the matter.

As a single bench of the High Court had dismissed an earlier petition of Virbhadra Singh and his wife Pratibha Singh under Article 482 seeking transfer of investigation to a central agency like CBI, Virbhadra and his wife again approached the court on Tuesday seeking transfer of the investigation to an independent agency under Article 226.

Placing material before the court about allegation of bias in the investigations, Virbhadra’s application has named chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and director general police (DGP) Daljit Manhas as respondents in the case.

The audio CD case against Virbhadra and his wife, after completion of investigations, is ready for filing a charge sheet before the trial court.

The matter involves alleged illegal money transactions said to have taken place about two decades ago, which are reportedly heard in a recorded telephone conversation the duo are said to have had with a deceased bureaucrat Mohinder Lal.

With the HIgh Court due to hear the case a week later, the matter of filing the charge sheet before the trial court has been deferred.

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