The Himachal Pradesh government on Saturday handed over the controversial phone tapping case to state Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau,directing the agency to complete the probe in a time-bound manner. Now,the Vigilance Bureau will decide whether an FIR needs to be lodged in the case.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had ordered a Vigilance probe into the case around a month ago but it was only on Friday evening that the home department made a reference about it to DGP (Vigilance) Prithvi Raj.
Following this,on Saturday morning,the ADGP met Additional Chief secretary (Home) Prem Kumar,who give him a seven-page list of the telephone numbers retrieved by the state Forensic Laboratory from CIDs technical wing and a letter entrusting the probe to the agency.
When contacted,Prithvi Raj said: We have received the reference from the home department today and also an exhaustive list of telephone numbers. Information made available in this regard is being analysed. I have held a meeting to work out the modalities for the investigation. The agency will keep the government updated on the progress from time to time.
Chief Secretary Sudripta Roy,on whose orders the police had seized hard discs of the computers from the CIDs technical wing on intervening night of December 24 and 25 hours before Virbhadra Singh took oath as the chief minister said: No terms of reference have been framed. The Vigilance will frame terms of reference and start the investigations. Whatever supporting material they need,will be provided.
According to the chief minister,over 1,300 telephones were tapped during the previous BJP regime,as indicated by the State Forensic Lab. Then CM Prem Kumar Dhumal,however,had denied having ordered phone tappings during his tenure.