New Delhi: The CBI has failed to nail the role of government officials during its four-year probe into alleged leakage of 2018 Staff Selection Commission examination paper despite repeated assurances from the investigation officer to the special court that it is looking into the matter, officials said.
The central probe agency had filed its charge sheet on August 2, 2019 against private persons in the case of leakage of papers and other malpractices during the SSC examination for Combined Graduate Level (Tier-ll) held between February 17 and February 22, 2018 under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act among other charges of the Indian Penal Code.
The CBI had kept the probe open to file a supplementary charge sheet claiming that it is looking into the role of public servants in the case but despite seeking repeated adjournments, it failed to arraign any government official in the case.
The investigation officer had told it at least four times since August last year that its probe is at the ”fag end” and a supplementary charge sheet will be filed soon.
In the absence of any public servant arraigned in case under PC Act, a special court cannot proceed with the case as it has to be heard by a different court because of jurisdictional issues.
The special court had given the last opportunity to the CBI in January to conclude its investigation and also instructed to file a status report on the probe but the central agency failed to bring any charge sheet against any public servant even two months later.
The CBI was left red-faced during the last hearing held recently where Special Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal pointed out that the investigation officer had been taking adjournment primarily on the plea that they are ”digging out the role of the public servant” in this case for which time is being sought on various occasions for one reason or other.
The judge noted that despite that, the supplementary charge sheet has not seen the light of the day and even on the last date of hearing, the investigating agency was directed to conclude the investigations at the earliest and even the last opportunity was accorded to them.
”Despite that nothing has moved and the investigating agency has already taken inordinate time in coming to this conclusion, whether the role of any public servant is there in this case or any offence under the PC Act is made out or not, which will be a jurisdictional fact for this court, as if no public servant is involved or no offence under the PC Act is made out, then this court may not have any jurisdiction to try this case, as it is a special court constituted to inquire and try the cases under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988,” he said.
The judge also issued a show-cause notice to the CBI as to why a penalty of Rs 20,000 is not imposed on them for ”inordinate delay”.
The CBI had registered the case on May 22, 2018 on the basis of the findings of its nearly three-month preliminary inquiry.
In its FIR, the agency had named 17 private persons, including 10 employees of Sify Technologies Pvt Ltd, in connection with the leak of paper for graduate level examination of Staff Selection Commission besides ”unknown officials of SSC” and other unidentified persons.
The agency carried out searches at multiple locations on May 23, 2018 on the premises of the identified labs and official premises of said private company & accused including Delhi, Noida, Mumbai, Chennai, Shimla, Jaipur, Patna.
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