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Lawyer seeks Delhi govt law officer's consent for initiating contempt proceedings against CBI DIG

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 30-10-2020 16:26 IST | Created: 30-10-2020 16:26 IST
Lawyer seeks Delhi govt law officer's consent for initiating contempt proceedings against CBI DIG

A lawyer has made a representation to the Delhi government standing counsel seeking consent for initiating criminal contempt proceedings against CBI Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Raghavendra Vatsa, who allegedly punched a public prosecutor in his face. Advocate Amit Sahni, in his representation sent to Delhi government standing counsel (criminal) Rahul Mehra, sought his consent under the Contempt of Courts Act to initiate proceedings of criminal contempt of court against Vatsa, an IPS officer posted at the CBI headquarters here, for allegedly causing deliberate obstruction in the administration of justice.

The issue relates to public prosecutor Sunil Kumar Verma who had told a trial court that he has filed a police complaint against DIG Vatsa for allegedly punching him in the face for not accelerating the framing of charges in a case involving Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's former private secretary Rajinder Kumar. While the trial court has summoned the DIG, the CBI has initiated a fact-finding inquiry into the allegations of its prosecutor.

In the October 28 representation, Sahni said, "It goes without saying that the political compulsions cannot license any CBI officer to the extent of causing beatings/strangulating an advocate/ public prosecutors of the premier agency for not accelerating the framing of charges pending before the special court, CBI New Delhi." He said being a responsible member of the Delhi High Court Bar Association and the Supreme Court Bar Association, he wishes to initiate criminal contempt proceedings against the IPS officer. According to Section 15 (2) of the Contempt of Courts Act, in the case of any criminal contempt of a subordinate court, the high court may take action on a reference made to it by the subordinate court or on a motion made by the Advocate-General or, in relation to a Union territory, by such Law Officer as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, specify in this behalf.

Sahni has also written to the Bar Council of India (BCI) for taking appropriate action regarding the unfortunate incident of physical attack on the CBI's public prosecutor. "The aforesaid series of events makes it incumbent upon us to take up the issue with the appropriate authorities and also for initiation of criminal contempt of court for causing deliberate hindrance in the dispensation of justice in a matter pending before the special judge...,” he said.

He said it is incumbent upon the BCI and all other bar associations to stand with the victimised lawyer and to uphold the dignity of legal profession and rule of law. Sahni requested the BCI to take a serious view of the unfortunate incident and pass resolution in solidarity with the victimised lawyer in the larger interest of legal fraternity.

According to prosecutor Verma, the DIG had punched him for delay in framing of charges against Kumar in a corruption case. The agency had filed a charge sheet against Kumar nearly four years ago.

DIG Vatsa had given an official complaint on October 8 to his seniors against Verma alleging misbehaviour, lackadaisical attitude towards work, absence from office, among others, sources said earlier. The next day, Verma came to the DIG's office where he allegedly misbehaved with Vatsa, and was taken away by other officers present there, they had claimed.


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