Money is not a valuable thing. This was the defence taken by Justice (retd) Nirmal Yadav seeking discharge in the cash-at-judges-door scam.
Since the relevant section of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act,under which she has been chargesheeted by the CBI,is not attracted against her,Yadav had taken this plea. The argument she made was that Section 11 of the PC Act is attracted only when a public servant obtains a valuable thing.
Saying that money,a sum of Rs 15 lakh received by her,is not valuable,Yadav had contended that she could not be charged under the relevant section of the PC Act.
Trashing the contention,special CBI Judge Vimal Kumar has dubbed Yadavs argument fallacious. In his detailed judgment,the CBI judge has held that in day-to-day life with money anything of value can be purchased. The judge has given a detailed finding on the issue raised by Yadav in his judgment ordering framing of charges against Yadav and co-accused in the cash-at-judges-door scam.
As per Oxford Dictionary of English,money means a current medium of exchange in the form of coins and bank notes. Thing means an object that one need not,cannot or does not wish to give a specific name,an inanimate material object as distinct from a living sentient being,an action,event,thought or utterance. In day-to-day life with money anything of value can be purchased. So,to say that money is not a valuable thing shall be fallacious,reads the 63-page judgment.
This was precisely what special CBI public prosecutor Anupam Gupta had argued in his response to Yadavs contention.
Referring to the genesis of Section 11 of the PC Act,Gupta had asserted that money or currency was regarded by the legislature as a valuable thing. He had submitted that if it (money) was accepted or obtained by a public servant without consideration or for inadequate consideration,such public servant would be guilty of an offence under Section 11 of the PC Act.
Finding force in Guptas contentions,the court has ruled that money is a valuable thing,fit to be considered under Section 11 of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act. In its judgment,the court has given details of phone call records among all the accused. So much so that the court has given five tables to highlight the number of calls exchanged among accused on August 13 and 14,2008.
It was on August 13,2008 that the packet of Rs 15 lakh,sent by Delhi businessman Ravinder Singh through his lawyer friend Sanjiv Bansal,was wrongly delivered at the residence of Justice Nirmaljit Kaur. The money was finally delivered to Justice Yadav,as per the CBI,on August 14,2008.
Charges will be framed against Yadav and four co-accused on August 12.