The CBI chief and the agency’s director of prosecution (DoP) have locked horns over dropping some crucial fodder scam charges against RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav.
CBI sources said director Ranjit Sinha favours dropping the charges while DoP O P Verma does not agree. The matter is being sent to Attorney General G E Vahanvati for his opinion.
The controversy is related to Lalu’s plea in the special court to set aside proceedings against him in some fodder scam cases on the ground that he has already been prosecuted for the same charges in a different FIR.
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The cases relate to illegal withdrawal of money from government treasuries on the basis of fake supply orders.
Lalu has argued that a person tried for a crime and acquitted or convicted cannot be tried again for the same crime.
On February 26, the DoP opined that while some evidence against Lalu was common to all cases, allegations of fraudulent withdrawals, amounts of withdrawal, officers accused of drawing and receiving, among others, were different.
“I am of the view that provisions of Section 300 (1) of CrPC and Article 20 of the constitution of India are not attracted in the present case,” Verma wrote.
Sinha disagreed and wrote that the “views of the branch officers and JD (Joint Director) are not consistent with the observations made” in a criminal appeal by the Jharkhand High Court.
“Thus I disagree…since I do not agree with Director of Prosecution, let the matter be referred to Ld. Solicitor General for his legal opinion…,” Sinha wrote.
The CBI Crime Manual, however, says an issue has to go to the AG in case of a disagreement between the prosecution and the investigation wings.