A Delhi court today allowed CBI’s plea to file a list of additional witnesses to endorse documents in a disproportionate assets case lodged against former Haryana Chief Minister O P Chautala. Special judge Sanjay Garg permitted CBI’s application in which it has said that various bank statements and other records were obtained during the probe and to “prove” these, some witnesses were required to be summoned.
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“Photocopies of income tax return of accused (Chautala) and his wife are required to be proved from original by summoning witness from I-T department concerned along with original records,” the application had said.
Advocate Harsh Sharma, who appeared for Chautala, had opposed CBI’s plea and sought dismissal saying the probe agency has been in possession of all documents since the time the initial investigation was carried out and it was not clear as to why additional witnesses were being called.
The counsel had alleged that the plea was filed to fill in the lacunae of the prosecution and “there has been significant delay on the part of the agency which is quite evident of its ulterior motives to harass the accused and delay the trial”.
CBI had registered three separate disproportionate assets cases against Chautala and his two sons Ajay and Abhay, on a complaint by Haryana Congress leader Shamsher Singh Surjewala.
The court had earlier taken Chautala into custody in the DA case after a man sought to withdraw his surety bond furnished for the politician’s bail.
CBI had on 26 March, 2010 filed charge sheet against Chautala indicting him for allegedly possessing assets worth Rs 6.09 crore, far exceeding his legal income between 1993 and 2006.
In its charge sheet, the agency had alleged that Chautala’s wealth was 189 per cent more than his income of Rs 3.22 crore during the period.
Chautala is in prison after being sentenced to a 10-year jail term in the junior basic teachers (JBT) scam case. He is serving imprisonment for illegally recruiting 3,206 JBT teachers in Haryana in 2000.