CBI court frames charges against Desh Rajhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/cbi-court-frames-charges-against-desh-raj/

CBI court frames charges against Desh Raj

Finds 'prima facie material' against accused as sufficient

A special CBI court here on Monday framed charges of corruption against suspended Superintendent of Police (City) Desh Raj Singh for allegedly demanding and accepting illegal gratification from Inspector Anokh Singh.

Making it clear that at the time of framing of charges,“minute examination of material on record is not required”,the court of special CBI Judge Vimal Kumar framed charges against Desh Raj under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Finding “prima facie material” against accused Desh Raj as sufficient,the CBI court framed charges against him under Section 7 (public servant taking gratification other than legal remuneration in respect of an official act) and 13 (1) (d) read with Section 13 (2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act,1988.

Referring to a Supreme Court judgment,the special CBI Judge held that “it is well settled that detailed circumstances showing existence of prima facie case against the accused for the offences in question are not required to be set out while framing the charges”.

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The concluding para of the judgment reads,“In view of the above material facts… it is sufficient to hold that challan and accompanying documents prima facie contain ingredients of offences punishable under sections 7,13 (1) (d) read with Section 13 (2) of Prevention of Corruption Act,1988 for framing of charges against the accused”.

The finding was given after the counsel for Desh Raj contended that there was no evidence to prove that Desh Raj had demanded bribe.

It was on October 18 last that Desh Raj was apprehended while demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs 1 lakh from the complainant,Inspector Anokh Singh of Sector 26 Police Station. The complainant had alleged that Desh Raj initially demanded a bribe of Rs 5 lakh from him,promising that he would get him exonerated in the two inquiries pending before Desh Raj.

After a bargain,the deal was struck at Rs 2 lakh. Aggrieved,Singh approached the CBI which laid a trap and caught Desh Raj red-handed while allegedly accepting the first instalment of Rs 1 lakh. Anokh Singh had recorded the conversation between him and Desh Raj.

Desh Raj’s counsel had argued that transcription of the recorded conversation,dated October 5 and October 12,did not contain voice of the accused and there was no word about the demand for bribe. The counsel submitted before the court that the CFSL report regarding conversation,dated October 5,at one place mentioned that utterances by Desh Raj Singh were not audible.

The defence lawyer referred to an order passed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court granting him bail,which had observed that “there is nothing specific that the amount was sought as a bribe. It is yet to be determined at the time of trial”. Taking this ground,the lawyer sought discharge of Desh Raj. Finding no merit,the special CBI court rejected the argument.

A 2008 batch AGMUT cadre IPS officer,Desh Raj joined Chandigarh Police as ASP (Central sub-division) in October 2010. He was promoted as SP (City) in July 2011.

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