CBI told Bombay High Court (HC) in an affidavit Monday it had the power to investigate the Adarsh society scam without specific Maharashtra government consent.
The society and the government have contended the agency requires state nod for the probe as per law.
The affidavit signed by investigating officer K Babu says the Maharashtra government accorded CBI consent in 1989 to exercise its jurisdiction in the state as per Delhi Special Police Establishment Act,1946. No specific consent by the government with regard to the Adarsh scam investigation by CBI was warranted.
Babu further points out that the state government cooperated with the agency by producing relevant documents at various points. He says HC had asked CBI to invoke provisions of Benami Transactions (Protection) Act,1988. The affidavit says this order,as also the direction to transfer a related missing Adarsh files case to CBI,confirm the intention of (HC) to authorise CBI to carry out a comprehensive investigation into the Adarsh scam.
It also questions the delay (of year-and-a-half after the FIR was registered) in raising the contention about jurisdiction and points out that no such argument was made in previous affidavits filed before HC in 2011.
CBI has accumulated vast amount of information and recorded statements of more than 141 witnesses. The consequences of stalling the proceedings at this stage are serious and will have far-reaching implications, Babu says.
The affidavit claims CBI sought office space for the investigation through three letters in 2011 sent on February 1,February 7 and March 1 to the chief secretary,but was denied.
Meanwhile,a judge part of the division bench hearing the matter Mridula Bhatkar recused herself Monday.