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SC Orders Status Quo on HC's Direction for Lodging FIR Against Former Delhi CP

The case pertains to an incident in 2001 when Kumar was posted as a joint director in the CBI and relates to alleged fabrication of documents of a case.


Updated:April 1, 2019, 5:56 PM IST
SC Orders Status Quo on HC's Direction for Lodging FIR Against Former Delhi CP
A file photo of the Supreme Court. (PTI)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Monday asked the Delhi Police to maintain "status quo" with regard to the Delhi High Court's direction asking it to lodge FIR against former police commissioner Neeraj Kumar and others.

They moved the apex court against the Delhi High Court's March 13 verdict asking the police to register FIR against Kumar and the then CBI officer Vinod Kumar Pandey for allegedly fabricating documents in a nearly two-decade old case.

The case pertains to an incident in 2001 when Kumar was posted as a joint director in the CBI and relates to alleged fabrication of documents of a case.

On Monday, the matter came up for hearing before a bench of Justices S A Bobde and S A Nazeer. The bench was told that in this matter, a division bench of high court had delivered its verdict on March 13 on the letter patent appeal (LPAs) filed against its single judge order of 2006 which was passed in a criminal writ petition.

The top court said it would deal with a larger legal issue as to whether LPA, also known as intra court appeal, would lie before a division bench of the high court against its own order of a single judge bench, that too in a criminal writ petition.

When one of the lawyers referred to the facts of the case and said that CBI has examined it thrice, the bench said, "We are not on the merits of the matter". The bench observed that it might ask the CBI Director to give his view in the matter.

"We are not asking anybody to eat humble pie. We are only asking whether it can be sorted out," the bench said, adding, "If the dispute can be settled by taking a particular view of the CBI Director, we can see then."

When the bench said it would hear the parties on the legal issue, the counsel appearing for one of the petitioner said that till then, the FIR should not be registered. The counsel said that 2006 order of the single judge of the high court directing the police to lodge FIR against the police officials was stayed by the division bench till this year.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for CBI, told the court that it is "demoralising for officers that FIR will be lodged against them for conducting raids". "We are saying status quo till further orders," the bench said and also issued notice to the Delhi Police on the plea filed before it.

The bench has posted the matter for further hearing on April 29. On March 29, two apex court judges including Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had recused themselves from hearing the matter.

A division bench of the high court had on March 13 dismissed the appeals against a 2006 order of its single-judge bench that directed the police to lodge an FIR against Kumar and then CBI officer Vinod Kumar Pandey.

"On June 26, 2006, the writ Court had directed for registration of FIR and proceed with the investigation immediately and conclude it within two months. This order has not been given effect to till now.

"Accordingly, we direct for registration of the FIR forthwith and conclude the investigation within a period of two months as directed by the writ court," the division bench had said in its order.

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