New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday gave CBI three weeks time to take over the charge of all Vyapam - admission and recruitment - scam cases in Madhya Pradesh while declining to grant, for now, the probe agency's request for six to eight weeks' time.
"If there is a substantial compliance (of our order), we will give you more time," said a bench of Chief Justice H.L.Dattu, Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Amitava Roy as Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar told the court that investigating agency will come back after three weeks.
The court gave the investigating agency six weeks time to appoint independent lawyers to lead its cases before the special CBI courts trying Vyapam scam cases.
The court also sought the presence of Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi on August 7 as it said that it would ask the department of personnel and training to fill vacancies in the CBI which were coming in the way of investigating agency probing various cases on its own steam instead of seeking to rely on borrowed manpower from the states.
"We will direct the filling up of vacancies, let DoPT appear in the court," said Chief Justice Dattu as Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar said: "That will go a long way."
The court sought the presence of the department after Solicitor General Kumar urged the court for direction to Madhya Pradesh government make it available the services of about 250 personnel who would be under its supervision and entrusted with the investigation of non-Vyapam cases being probed by it.
He told the court that the Madhya Pradesh High Court by a July 24, 2015 notification has set up 20 courts across the state for the trial of cases.
He said that if five courts, dedicated for the trial of Vyapam cases, could be set up in Bhopal, then it would be far easier for the CBI to appoint public prosecutor for them to lead probe agency's cases.
At the outset of the hearing, as Ranjit Kumar started addressing the court, Chief Justice Dattu asked him: "We asked you two question.. what is (the answer for) that."
Ranjit Kumar told the court that CBI needed six to eight weeks time to complete the task of taking over the Vyapam cases from the Special Task Forces (STF) working under the Special Investigation Team (SIT).
He told the court that CBI wanted to first take over the cases where investigation is underway and the cases where investigation has been completed and charge sheet filed can wait before taking them under its umbrella.
The court was told of the 34 alleged Vyapam related death cases, where no FIR was filed, the CBI registered PE in 11 cases.
Ranjit Kumar told the court that out of total 185 cases, in 78 cases the investigation is complete, charge sheet has been filed and trial is going on. Thete are thirty four cases involving "highly influential people including public servants".
As of now 78 cases involving impersonation and cheating in the examinations conducted by Vyapam are, for now, not the priority of the investigating agency.
The court was told that STF have registered 55 cases out of which 26 are under investigation and in 29 cases the trial is already underway. The court was told 130 cases were investigated by the state police.