SC immunity off, fight gets dirty in Finance Ministry as ED defends its director in Adhia’s line of fire
Hours after the Supreme Court lifted its immunity to ED joint director — who is probing the 2G scam and the Aircel-Maxis deal from facing any investigation, the agency stoutly defended its officer.
NEW DELHI: Hours after the Supreme Court on Wednesday lifted its immunity to Enforcement Directorate joint director Rajeshwar Singh — who is probing the 2G scam and the Aircel-Maxis deal — from facing any investigation, the agency stoutly defended its officer.
The SC allowed the government to look into allegations of disproportionate assets and said the Centre can take a call whether Singh should continue to investigate the Aircel-Maxis case involving the Chidambarams.
“An officer under a cloud cannot investigate the Aircel Maxis case,” the bench observed.
The order came on a petition from journalist Rajneesh Kapur seeking investigation against Singh for allegedly amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.
Noting the allegations were serious, the court told Singh, “You are simply an officer. You cannnot be given a blanket clean chit. Everybody is accountable.”
Additional Solicitor General Vikramjit Banerjee handed over a communication in a sealed cover to the court, which was later described as an old R&AW report by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy. The report hinted Singh was in touch with an ISI agent.
The ED hit back saying that Singh — who has reportedly proceeded on leave — got the call from Dubai but it was pertaining to an ongoing investigation. “Singh passed on this information to the Directorate and the same was used in the investigation of the case,” it said.
‘Why pick on me?’ asks rajeshwar singh
Rajeshwar Singh has made a scathing attack on revenue secretary Hasmukh Adhia questioning him if he has developed animosity towards him by “siding with scamsters and their affiliates”.
In a letter dated 11 June, 2018 sent through ED director Karnal Singh, he said, “It pained me that you have expressed many a times to senior officers over casual conversations that I have been manipulating the judiciary, especially the Supreme Court of India... It is strange and also unbelievable that you believe so many judges can be manipulated and that too over such a long period of time.”