CBI likely to tell SC that ‘law minister proposed changes in coal report’

May 6th, 2013

PTI  New Delhi, May 04, 2013

First Published: 23:06 IST(4/5/2013) | Last Updated: 02:49 IST(5/5/2013)

The CBI is likely to convey to the Supreme Court on Monday that changes were proposed both by law minister Ashwani Kumar and Attorney General GM Vahanvati in its status report on investigations into the controversial allocation of coal blocks.

CBI’s director Ranjit Sinha discussed an affidavit in this connection to be filed by the agency on Monday with its lawyer UU lalit who has replaced Additional Solicitor General Harin Raval.

The ASG resigned after a controversy that put the government in a spot erupted over his allegation that Vahanvati tried to influence the probe.

Sources said on Saturday the crucial CBI affidavit while confirming that changes were made in the draft status report is also likely to say that the law minister had proposed a “dilution” of language in the document before it was given to the apex court.

The affidavit is also likely to mention that the law minister disagreed with the line — “rules not being followed in coal allocation” — in the status report, the sources said.

It will further state that the law minister had argued that CBI cannot reach this conclusion before the investigation is completed, the sources added.

The sources said that CBI is likely to confirm that the Attorney General saw more than one draft of the status report.

The sources said CBI will tell the apex court that the probe agency manual rules remained silent on the issue of access to the status report.

The sources said the affidavit is also likely to name the Joint Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office(PMO) and a Joint Secretary in the Coal ministry in connection with the status report. The document is also likely to say there was a meeting with a PMO official and that changes were made.

The CBI Director had told the apex court in a two-page affidavit that the draft status report was shared with the Law Minister ‘as desired by him’ and also shown to a JS in the PMO and a JS in the Coal ministry.

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