The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate to expedite probe in the coal allocation scam cases, saying they should devise some method to deal with them. A three-judge bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur expressed displeasure over the delay by the agencies in not completing investigations in the coal block allocation scam cases in a time-bound manner.
“You need to expedite the investigation in these cases. Some method has to be devised. You need to apply some out-of-the-box thinking. We understand that some delay is inevitable. But the probe cannot go on for so many years,” the bench, also comprising Justices Kurian Joseph and A K Sikri, said.
The apex court fixed the matter for further consideration in the first week of December. Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for NGO Common Cause, had earlier told the court that CBI has not expedited investigation in several coal cases despite direction from the apex court.
The apex court had on January 23 constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the allegations of “abuse of authority” prima facie committed by former CBI Director Ranjit Sinha to scuttle investigation and enquiries in coal block allocation cases.
It had observed that a prima facie case has “definitely” been made out for probe into the abuse of authority by Sinha. It had later directed that no CBI officer, who is probing coal scam cases or officials from SIT probing allegations of “abuse of authority” against the former CBI director, would be transferred without its prior permission.