THE Haryana government has decided to challenge the Punjab and Haryana High Court judgment quashing Haryana Lokayukta’s order for registration of a criminal case against former chief parliamentary secretary Ram Kishan Fauji for allegedly seeking Rs 5 crore for getting Change of Land Use (CLU) permission for a Gurgaon land in September 2013.
The FIR was registered under the Prevention of Corruption Act against Fauji on December 4 last year after Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar gave a green signal to comply with the Lokayukta order.
The compact disc that shows Fauji allegedly seeking Rs 5 crore for CLU was released by Indian National Lok Dal leaders in September 2013.
It was on February 27 this year that the single-judge bench of the High Court quashed Haryana Lokayukta’s order of January last year, after finding the compact disc to be “unauthentic”.
The single judge had said there was no credible information for bribery and, therefore, Lokayukta was incompetent to give directions for registering a complaint.
However, in its appeal which is yet to come up before the division bench of the High Court, the Haryana government has mentioned that the single judge “has erred in law while adjudicating upon the disputed question of fact in writ jurisdiction”.
It has also been mentioned that the single judge erred in not relying upon the report given by the Central Forensic Science Laboratory(CFSL), Chandigarh.
The Haryana government has also submitted that the Chandigarh CFSL “has given positive finding that after a thorough examination ‘on frame by frame’ of the video contents and the auditory, that there was no tampering.”The appeal further mentions that this was the specific report before the Lokayukta which has been relied upon for ordering registration of FIR and to investigate the entire case expeditiously.
The appeal further reads that the single judge bench “has erred in law by not hearing the contents of CD whereas, on a mere hearing of CD, it is crystal clear that money was demanded for getting a change of land use”.
The state government has submitted that it would not be logical to conclude that the contents of the CD are not authentic “because as per the report of CFSL Hyderabad, audio-video files were never compared. Therefore, there was no occasion to authenticate the veracity of CD at all.” It has also been mentioned that even Fauji also produced a report from Truth Lab, Hyderabad, and a perusal of the report also indicates that “no changes were found in the text version fluency and tone of speech in the recording ‘Q’.”