No pressure in SNC Lavalin investigation: CBI

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Kochi, Feb 18 (UNI) The CBI today informed the Kerala High Court that it was under no undue pressure while investigating the SNC Lavalin case and said former state electricity ministers Pinarayi Vijayan and G Karthikeyan would be examined at the appropriate time.

In a statement filed before the court, the CBI said the two former ministers had not been examined so far and would be questioned at an appropriate stage in the investigation.

Describing the averment that ruling political party was trying to sabotage the CBI investigation and absolve the former ministers as ''false'', the agency said it was under no undue pressure in the case.

It also said the investigation was not slack and was going on in full swing.

The agency however said the investigation could not be conducted in a time-bound manner as a part of it had to be done in a foreign country, Canada.

So far, the CBI had examined nearly 650 documents and around 100 witnesses in the case, it said.

The CBI statement was filed in response to a petition filed by 'Crime' magazine editor T P Nandakumar, seeking a time-bound investigation and regular monitoring by the High Court.

The matter was being heard by a division bench comprising Chief Justice H L Dattu and Justice K M Joseph.

The case pertains to a multi-crore deal, awarded to Canadian firm SNC Lavalin to revamp three power plants in the state during the previous rule of the LDF Government, when Mr Pinarayi Vijayan was the electricity minister. Subsequently, Mr Karthikeyan was the power minister in the UDF Government.

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