The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed the pleas of Congress leader Jagdish Tytler and controversial businessman Abhishek Verma challenging framing of charges against them in a corruption case. Tytler and Verma were put on trial by a city court in the case for allegedly using a forged letter addressed to then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2009. “The petitions are dismissed,” Justice Ashutosh Kumar said while pronouncing the judgment.
The two had sought setting aside of the trial court’s December 9, 2015 order. Tytler has been accused of having knowledge of the nature and purpose of transaction entered into between Verma and a private company by allegedly using a fake letter addressed to Singh.
The trial court had framed charges against Tytler and Verma while observing that it was evident that the former had full knowledge of the nature and purpose of transaction being entered into between Verma and officials of M/s ZTE Telecom India Pvt Ltd.
The court had framed charges against Tytler, who is out on bail, for alleged offences under various sections of the IPC including 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with 420 (cheating) and 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and under section 8 of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act dealing with taking gratification by corrupt or illegal means to influence public servant.
Verma, who is also out on bail, was put on trial for alleged offences under sections 120-B read with 420, 471, 511 (attempt to commit an offence) of IPC and under section 8 of the PC Act.
The court had said prima facie, both the accused had tried to cheat the officials of ZTE Telecom India Pvt Ltd on the basis of the forged letter and Verma had demanded bribe of Rs 50 lakh to sort out the visa issue of their employees.
CBI had chargesheeted both the accused alleging that M/s ZTE Telecom India Pvt Ltd was adversely affected by the order in which it was said that all foreigners, who were already in India on business visas and engaged in executing projects or contracts, should leave the country on expiry of their existing visas or by October 31, 2009, whichever was earlier.
It had further alleged that a meeting took place at Tytler’s residence where Verma and the firm’s officials were present.
During another meeting, the purported forged letter of then minister of state for home Ajay Maken addressed to the Prime Minister was shown to make them believe that the visa problem was being sorted out through them, the CBI alleged.