Reports of shunting of CBI officer from 2G probe serious: SC

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Shunting of CBI officer serious: SC
New Delhi, Aug 12: The Supreme Court today reacted sharply by terming as "serious matter" reports suggesting that Santosh Rastogi, a DIG-rank CBI officer, has been shunted out of the investigation of all 2G spectrum scam matters.

"If it is done, ask them (CBI) to rectify," a bench headed by Justice H L Dattu said when reports about Rastogi, who has been supervising the probe in the 2G spectrum scam, were brought to the notice of the court.

Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the NGO, Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL), submitted that Rastogi has been shunted out of the 2G investigation and sent to crime branch. He said this was done despite the order of the apex court providing protection to all officials involved in the probe in the scam from being shifted without its permission.

The bench, also comprising justices Pinaki Chandra Ghosh and S A Bobde, said it was a "serious matter" and asked the CBI counsel K K Venugopal to get all the files and records to verify what Bhushan was saying on the issue.

Bhushan also said that even senior advocate U U Lalit, who was appointed as the Special Public Prosecutor by the apex court for conducting the prosecution in the 2G matters, has written a note to the CBI opposing Rastogi from being kept away from the probe.

Rastogi, who used to regularly come to the apex court in the matter, was absent today. The bench also took into account the plea of CBI to appoint a new SSP in place of Lalit, who has been appointed judge of the Supreme Court.

It asked Venugopal to suggest three names of eminent advocates for appointment as SPP and posted the matter for hearing on September 2.

The bench clarified that other members of Lalit's team would continue to assist the trial court in its proceedings.


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